Thailand was notified last week that the United States is concerned about the government's rice-buying project. Washington has no evidence, but plans to complain to the World Trade Organisation (WTO). The main reason the US Trade Representative (USTR) is upset is because the government is buying rice from farmers at above-market prices. The question the US wants answered is whether Thailand will then sell _ "dump" is the legal word _ that rice on world markets at lower prices.
The charge is a red herring. The USTR has no more evidence that Thailand will dump rice than any other product. In theory, Thailand might dump chili peppers, pickup trucks or blue jeans.
Of course, the US might dump its own agricultural products. It certainly has done so in the past. Many argue it is still doing that. The European Union is continuing to pursue a case that the US has already lost once at the WTO, that Washington is complicit in providing huge subsidies to the Boeing company to sell its jets well below their market value.
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