Blog: Leonie BarriePutting the boot in

Leonie Barrie | 24 March 2006

Yesterday’s decision by the EU member states to “approve” anti-dumping duties on EU leather footwear imports from China and Vietnam has sent tempers rising. But did you know that just three (Malta, Slovakia and Belgium) of the EU’s 25 member states voted in favour of the measure while 11 voted against it? Surely by anyone’s calculations that’s not a majority?

Well, according to Brussels it is. Under its arcane rules, the 11 other member states that abstained are considered to have voted in favour of the proposal. So the Commissions recommendations were carried on a 14 (3 Yes + 11 Abstentions) to 11 vote. No wonder it’s not only the Chinese who can’t see the joke.

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