Health Affairs  |  September 5, 2018

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At the May 2018 World Health Assembly, the United States threatened “punishing” trade sanctions if Ecuador supported a resolution urging women to breastfeed their newborns, according to the New York Times. That threat also likely deterred other lower-income countries from offering the resolution. Ultimately, Russia proffered the resolution, and the US withdrew its threats. The US has a history of opposing international actions that could harm the infant formula industry, which has moved aggressively to expand their markets in low- and middle-income countries. US-based multinationals comprise three of the six dominant infant formula producers globally.

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