"Russia's import restrictions on European pork are clearly disproportionate, discriminatory and not based on science," said EU Trade Commissioner Karel De Gucht as cited by the statement. "As this goes against international trade rules, Europe has no choice but to request the establishment of a panel at the WTO."
The issue will be considered at special meeting of WTO’s dispute settlement body scheduled on July 10. For the first time the country that is being challenged can decline the request, but for the second time, usually in a month, it has no such right and the arbitration group is established.
The bilateral talks between the country and the EU, when the sides tried to settle the dispute were held between April 30 and May 1, but fell through.
Russia banned pork imports from the EU in January due to the threat of the African swine fever outbreak. In April the Federal Service for Veterinary and Phytosanitary Oversight banned pork imports from Poland and Lithuania, after which the EU filed the application to the WTO.