Statement from Ambassador Katherine Tai on European Union’s International Procurement Instrument Investigation

April 24, 2024


WASHINGTON – Today, the European Commission initiated an investigation under the European Union’s (EU) new International Procurement Instrument into unfair government procurement policies and practices of the Chinese government against foreign medical devices.  Following consultations between the Commission and the People’s Republic of China (PRC), if the PRC does not make changes that create an acceptable solution, the European Commission may impose restrictions on the access of products made in the PRC to the EU public procurement market. 
 “We will follow with interest the European Commission’s investigation of how the Chinese government treats foreign medical devices in the PRC’s government procurement market under the EU’s new International Procurement Instrument,” said United States Trade Representative Katherine Tai. “The United States and the EU have worked extensively under the U.S.-EU Trade and Technology Council’s Global Trade Challenges working group in identifying and exploring ways to address the non-market policies and practices used by the PRC in a range of sectors, including medical devices, to unfairly advantage domestic products and companies and displace foreign products in the Chinese market to ultimately dominate markets globally.  The International Procurement Instrument is a trade tool that can potentially help address the unfair procurement policies and practices pursued by the PRC, in a manner similar to the way that the United States’ Trade Agreements Act of 1979 already addresses reciprocal procurement.” 

The United States’ Trade Agreements Act (TAA) of 1979 implements international procurement obligations that guarantee that the products and services of signatory countries and other eligible countries receive nondiscriminatory treatment for TAA-covered procurements.  In order to encourage additional countries to provide reciprocal procurement opportunities, the TAA prohibits the procurement of products from a country not designated under the TAA.