Xinhua reports that the European Union (EU) said Tuesday that it would not join the United States in an argument over the oil price fixing allegation inside the dispute settlement panel of the World Trade Organization (WTO).
One EU official said that the 15-nation bloc did not think the WTO was the proper forum for the dispute over the allegation.
"It is not a matter for the WTO that is not the proper forum for this issue," said Gunnar Wiegand, spokesman for the External Relations Commission of the EU.
When asked whether the union would join the U.S. in the dispute against the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), the spokesman said that it was not in the view.
A U.S. federal court has already granted a one-year injunction banning OPEC from fixing prices as Prewitt Enterprises won a civil anti-trust case in an Alabama court, accusing the oil producing group of conspiring to fix oil price through oil supply agreements.
OPEC made successive cuts in production through 1998 and 1999 that were blamed for pushing up crude oil prices to their highest level since the 1991 Gulf War and for lifting fuel prices.
© 2001 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)