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Domain-Specific Plurilateral Cooperation As An Alternative To Trade Agreements, Bernard M. Hoekman, Charles F. Sabel Jan 2021

Domain-Specific Plurilateral Cooperation As An Alternative To Trade Agreements, Bernard M. Hoekman, Charles F. Sabel

Faculty Scholarship

At the end of 2017 different groups of WTO members decided to launch talks on four subjects, setting aside the WTO consensus working practice. This paper argues that these ‘joint statement initiatives’ (JSIs) should seek to establish open plurilateral agreements (OPAs) even in instances where the outcome can be incorporated into existing schedules of commitments of participating WTO members. Designing agreements as OPAs provides an institutional framework for collaboration among the responsible national authorities, transparency, mutual review, and learning, as well as alternatives to default WTO dispute settlement procedures which may not be appropriate for supporting cooperation on the matters ...


Informing Wto Reform: Dispute Settlement Performance, 1995-2020, Bernard M. Hoekman, Petros C. Mavroidis, Maarja Saluste Jan 2021

Informing Wto Reform: Dispute Settlement Performance, 1995-2020, Bernard M. Hoekman, Petros C. Mavroidis, Maarja Saluste

Faculty Scholarship

This article presents salient facts on the performance of WTO dispute settlement, using an updated dataset on cases adjudicated between 1992 and mid 2020. The dataset provides a comprehensive compilation of information on WTO disputes, including complainants, respondents and third parties; the substantive matters tabled; the WTO provisions invoked; the claims that are accepted or rejected by adjudicating bodies; the time involved to complete the consultation, panel and appeal (Appellate Body) stages; and the identity of panelists and how they were appointed. We highlight elements of the operation of the system that are salient to WTO reform discussions, while drawing ...


Insulating A Wto Investment Facilitation Framework From Isds, George A. Bermann, N. Jansen Calamita, Manjiao Chi, Karl P. Sauvant Jan 2020

Insulating A Wto Investment Facilitation Framework From Isds, George A. Bermann, N. Jansen Calamita, Manjiao Chi, Karl P. Sauvant

Faculty Scholarship

The authors identify several ways in which a WTO investment facilitation framework for development can be insulated from investor-state dispute settlement provisions in international investment agreements, and suggest specific formulations in this respect.


Making Sense Of The Arbitrator’S Ruling In Ds 316 Ec And Certain Member States – Measures Affecting Trade In Large Civil Aircraft (Article 22.6-Ec): A Jigsaw Puzzle With (At Least) A Couple Missing Pieces, Petros C. Mavroidis, Kamal Saggi Jan 2020

Making Sense Of The Arbitrator’S Ruling In Ds 316 Ec And Certain Member States – Measures Affecting Trade In Large Civil Aircraft (Article 22.6-Ec): A Jigsaw Puzzle With (At Least) A Couple Missing Pieces, Petros C. Mavroidis, Kamal Saggi

Faculty Scholarship

“The U.S. won a $7.5 Billion award from the World Trade Organization against the European Union, who has for many years treated the USA very badly on Trade due to Tariffs, Trade Barriers, and more. This case going on for years, a nice victory”, tweeted President Trump’s on October 3, 2019. The United States (US) won not only the highest amount of retaliation ever adjudicated in the history of the WTO but also an ongoing right to retaliate on an annual basis until such time as the EU had complied by either removing the subsidies it granted ...


Stakeholder Preferences And Priorities For The Next Wto Director General, Matteo Fiorini, Bernard Hoekman, Petros C. Mavroidis, Douglas Nelson, Robert Wolfe Jan 2020

Stakeholder Preferences And Priorities For The Next Wto Director General, Matteo Fiorini, Bernard Hoekman, Petros C. Mavroidis, Douglas Nelson, Robert Wolfe

Faculty Scholarship

The WTO is looking for a new Director-General (DG). What does the trade community think is needed? This paper reports on the results of an expert survey undertaken as part of a research project on global trade governance at the European University Institute to solicit views on what WTO members and the international trade community consider the most important attributes of candidates for the position, as well as views on the substantive policy and institutional reform priorities confronting the WTO – and thus the new DG. The results suggest strong support for someone with managerial and political experience, and a professional ...


Wto Dispute Settlement And The Appellate Body Crisis: Insider Perceptions And Members’ Revealed Preferences, Matteo Fiorini, Bernard M. Hoekman, Petros C. Mavroidis, Maarja Saluste, Robert Wolfe Jan 2020

Wto Dispute Settlement And The Appellate Body Crisis: Insider Perceptions And Members’ Revealed Preferences, Matteo Fiorini, Bernard M. Hoekman, Petros C. Mavroidis, Maarja Saluste, Robert Wolfe

Faculty Scholarship

The WTO dispute settlement system is in crisis, following the decision of the United States to block new appointments to the Appellate Body (AB). The AB went into hibernation in December 2019, not having enough sitting members to be able to operate. What do WTO members think of the performance of WTO dispute settlement? How much do WTO members care about the existence and operation of an appeals mechanism? In this article, we report on the results of a survey of WTO Members’ perceptions of the AB and the role it plays (should play). We complement this with data on ...


International Investment Agreements: Impacts On Climate Change Policies In India, China And Beyond, Lise Johnson, Brooke Güven Nov 2016

International Investment Agreements: Impacts On Climate Change Policies In India, China And Beyond, Lise Johnson, Brooke Güven

Columbia Center on Sustainable Investment Staff Publications

Mitigating and adapting to climate change will require a fundamental reorientation of our global economy as we move away from fossil fuels and transition to a low carbon and climate-resilient world. This reorientation depends on government actions to help catalyze and channel financial flows in new directions and away from business-as-usual practices.

International investment agreements (IIAs) – treaties that now number over 3,000 and have the objective of promoting and protecting cross-border investment flows_could potentially play a key role in these efforts to scale up and (re)direct investments to meet climate change mitigation and adaptation needs. As presently drafted ...


The Gang That Couldn't Shoot Straight: The Not So Magnificent Seven Of The Wto Appellate Body, Petros C. Mavroidis Jan 2016

The Gang That Couldn't Shoot Straight: The Not So Magnificent Seven Of The Wto Appellate Body, Petros C. Mavroidis

Faculty Scholarship

The WTO Appellate Body (AB) has produced a volume-wise important body of case law, which is often difficult to penetrate, never mind classify. Howse (2016) has attempted a very lucid taxonomy of the case law using the standard of review as benchmark for it. His conclusion is that the AB is quite cautious when facing nondiscriminatory measures, especially measures relating to the protection of human life and health, while it has adopted a more intrusive (into national sovereignty) standard when dealing with trade measures (like antidumping), which are by definition discriminatory as they concern imports only. In my response, I ...


Dispute Settlement In The Wto: Mind Over Matter, Petros C. Mavroidis Jan 2016

Dispute Settlement In The Wto: Mind Over Matter, Petros C. Mavroidis

Faculty Scholarship

The basic point I advocate in this paper is that the WTO Dispute Settlement System aims to curb unilateralism. No sanctions can be imposed, unless if the arbitration process is through, the purpose of which is to ensure that reciprocal commitments entered should not be unilaterally undone through the commission of illegalities. There are good reasons though, to doubt whether practice guarantees full reciprocity. The insistence on calculating remedies prospectively, and not as of the date when an illegality has been committed, and the ensuing losses for everybody that could or could not be symmetric, lend support to the claim ...


Black Cat, White Cat: The Identity Of The Wto Judges, Louise Johannesson, Petros C. Mavroidis Jan 2015

Black Cat, White Cat: The Identity Of The Wto Judges, Louise Johannesson, Petros C. Mavroidis

Faculty Scholarship

WTO judges are proposed by the WTO Secretariat and elected to act as ‘judges’ if either approved by the parties to a dispute, or by the WTO Director-General in case no agreement between the parties has been possible. They are typically ‘Geneva crowd’, that is, they are either current or former delegates representing their country before the WTO. This observation holds for both first- as well as second-instance WTO judges (e.g. Panelists and members of the Appellate Body). In that, the WTO evidences an attitude strikingly similar to the GATT. Whereas the legal regime has been heavily ‘legalized’, the ...


Dispute Settlement In The Wto (Mind Over Matter), Petros C. Mavroidis Jan 2015

Dispute Settlement In The Wto (Mind Over Matter), Petros C. Mavroidis

Faculty Scholarship

The WTO Dispute Settlement System aimed to curb unilateralism by establishing a multilateral process operating under the aegis of the WTO as the exclusive forum for WTO adjudication. Intuitively, one would expect that those negatively affected by the curtailing of their power to unilaterally do justice for themselves, would agree to multilateral resolution of disputes if the established regime could guarantee enforcement of obligations in comparable terms (to unilateral enforcement). In this perspective, respect and guarantee of reciprocal commitments is the key ingredient. Reciprocal commitments entered should not be unilaterally undone through the commission of illegalities. There are good reasons ...


Multilateral Environmental Agreements In The Wto: Silence Speaks Volumes, Henrik Horn, Petros C. Mavroidis Jan 2013

Multilateral Environmental Agreements In The Wto: Silence Speaks Volumes, Henrik Horn, Petros C. Mavroidis

Faculty Scholarship

This study contributes to the debate concerning the appropriate role of multilateral environmental agreements (MEAs) in in WTO dispute settlement. Its distinguishing feature is that it seeks to address this relationship in light of the reason why the parties have chosen to separate their obligations into two bodies of law without providing an explicit nexus between them. The basic conclusion is that legislators’ silence concerning this relationship should speak volumes to WTO adjudicating bodies: MEAs should not be automatically understood as imposing legally binding obligations on WTO Members, but could be used as sources of factual information.


In The Shadow Of The Dsu: Addressing Specific Trade Concerns In The Wto Sps And Tbt Committees, Henrik Horn, Petros C. Mavroidis, Erik Wijkström Jan 2013

In The Shadow Of The Dsu: Addressing Specific Trade Concerns In The Wto Sps And Tbt Committees, Henrik Horn, Petros C. Mavroidis, Erik Wijkström

Faculty Scholarship

The paper argues that focusing only on disputes formally raised in the WTO Dispute Settlement system underestimates the extent of trade conflict resolution within the WTO. Both the SPS and TBT Committees address a significant number of ‘specific trade concerns’ (STCs) that in the overwhelming majority of cases do not become formal disputes. The STCs address differences between Members concerning the conformity of national measures in the SPS and TBT areas with these agreements. It appears as if Committee work on STCs significantly helps defuse potential trade frictions concerning national policies in the covered areas.


Meas In The Wto: Silence Speaks Volumes, Henrik Horn, Petros C. Mavroidis Jan 2013

Meas In The Wto: Silence Speaks Volumes, Henrik Horn, Petros C. Mavroidis

Faculty Scholarship

This study contributes to the debate concerning the appropriate role of multilateral environmental agreements (MEAs) in WTO law, and in particular, in WTO dispute settlement. The distinguishing feature of the study is that it seeks to address the relationship between MEAs and WTO law in light of the reason why the parties have chosen to separate their obligations into two bodies of law without providing an explicit nexus between them. The basic conclusion is that legislators’ silence concerning this relationship should speak volumes to WTO adjudicating bodies: MEAs should not be automatically understood as imposing legally binding obligations on WTO ...


One (Firm) Is Not Enough: A Legal-Economic Analysis Of Ec-Fasteners, Chad P. Brown, Petros C. Mavroidis Jan 2012

One (Firm) Is Not Enough: A Legal-Economic Analysis Of Ec-Fasteners, Chad P. Brown, Petros C. Mavroidis

Faculty Scholarship

The WTO’s Appellate Body (AB) dealt with a number of issues for the first time in the Report of EC-Fasteners. Importantly, the AB discussed the consistency of the European Union (EU) regulation with the multilateral rules on the conditions for deviating from the obligation to calculate individual dumping margins. Although China formally won the argument, the AB may have opened the door to treat China as a non-market economy (NME) even beyond 2016 when China’s NME-status was thought to expire under the terms of China’s 2001 WTO Accession Protocol. The AB further dealt with numerous other issues ...


Arbitrating Trade Disputes (Who's The Boss?), Petros C. Mavroidis Jan 2012

Arbitrating Trade Disputes (Who's The Boss?), Petros C. Mavroidis

Faculty Scholarship

World Trade Organization (“WTO”) dispute settlement has attracted a lot of interest over the years and there is a plethora of academic papers focusing on various aspects of this system. Paradoxically, there is little known about the identity of the WTO judges: since, at the end of the day, the WTO has evolved into the busiest forum litigating state-to-state disputes. There are many writings regarding the appointment process in other international tribunals. At the risk of doing injustice to many papers on this issue, we should mention the following works: Terris et al. look at various courts and especially those ...


The Wto Dispute Settlement System 1995-2010: Some Descriptive Statistics, Henrik Horn, Louise Johannesson, Petros C. Mavroidis Jan 2011

The Wto Dispute Settlement System 1995-2010: Some Descriptive Statistics, Henrik Horn, Louise Johannesson, Petros C. Mavroidis

Faculty Scholarship

The Dispute Settlement (DS) system is a central feature of the World Trade Organization (WTO) Agreement. This compulsory and binding two-level mechanism for the adjudication of disputes between WTO Members is the most active among international courts. The functioning of the DS system has attractive research interest among both lawyers and economists. This paper reports some descriptive statistics of the working of the DS system based on the recently updated Horn and Mavroidis WTO Dispute Settlement Data Set. The data set covers all 426 WTO disputes initiated through the official filing of a Request for Consultations from January 1, 1995 ...


Winners And Losers In The Panel Stage Of The Wto Dispute Settlement System, Bernard Hoekman, Henrik Horn, Petros C. Mavroidis Jan 2008

Winners And Losers In The Panel Stage Of The Wto Dispute Settlement System, Bernard Hoekman, Henrik Horn, Petros C. Mavroidis

Faculty Scholarship

A significant body of research has sought to examine claims that developing countries are underrepresented as complainants, and/or over-represented as respondents in the WTO dispute settlement system. Most of this literature has focused on their propensity to participate, the idea being that under-representation as complainants or over representation as respondents would suggest a bias in the system. This paper provides some descriptive statistics that could shed light on a different manifestation of a “bias” against developing countries. It employs a dataset containing information on the legal claims made in each WTO dispute between 1995 and 2006, as well as ...


Let's Stick Together (And Break With The Past): The Use Of Economic Analysis In Wto Dispute Litigation, Petros C. Mavroidis Jan 2005

Let's Stick Together (And Break With The Past): The Use Of Economic Analysis In Wto Dispute Litigation, Petros C. Mavroidis

Faculty Scholarship

The treatment of a number of issues that are being routinely discussed in WTO dispute settlement practice could benefit substantially, were economists to be institutionally implicated in the process. As things stand, the participation of economists in dispute settlement proceedings is infrequent and erratic: for all practical purposes, it depends on the discretion of WTO adjudicating bodies. There is indirect evidence that recourse to such expertise has been made, albeit on very few occasions. Institutional reforms are necessary; otherwise, it seems unlikely that the existing picture will change in the near future. A look into ongoing negotiations on the DSU ...


The Case For Auctioning Countermeasures In The Wto, Kyle Bagwell, Petros C. Mavroidis, Robert W. Staiger Jan 2004

The Case For Auctioning Countermeasures In The Wto, Kyle Bagwell, Petros C. Mavroidis, Robert W. Staiger

Faculty Scholarship

A major accomplishment of the Uruguay Round of GATT negotiations in creating the World Trade Organization (WTO) was the introduction of new dispute settlement procedures. These procedures were intended to provide a significant step forward, relative to GATT, in the settling of trade disputes, in large part by ensuring that violations of WTO commitments would be met with swift retaliation ("suspension of concessions") by the affected trading partners. While the dispute settlement procedures of the WTO indeed represent a considerable improvement over those in GATT, nine years of experience under the new procedures suggests that significant problems of enforcement remain ...


The Case For Tradable Remedies In Wto Dispute Settlement, Kyle Bagwell, Petros C. Mavroidis, Robert W. Staiger Jan 2004

The Case For Tradable Remedies In Wto Dispute Settlement, Kyle Bagwell, Petros C. Mavroidis, Robert W. Staiger

Faculty Scholarship

In response to concerns over the efficacy of the WTO dispute settlement system, especially in regard to its use by developing countries, Mexico has tabled a proposal to introduce tradable remedies within the Dispute Settlement Understanding. The idea is that a country that has won cause before the WTO, and who is facing non-implementation by the author of the illegal act but feels that its own capacity to exercise its right to impose countermeasures is unlikely to lead to compliance, can auction off that right. The attractiveness of this idea is that it offers an additional possibility to injured WTO ...


The Case For Tradable Remedies In Wto Dispute Settlement, Kyle Bagwell, Petros C. Mavroidis, Robert W. Staiger Jan 2004

The Case For Tradable Remedies In Wto Dispute Settlement, Kyle Bagwell, Petros C. Mavroidis, Robert W. Staiger

Faculty Scholarship

It has been almost two years since the process leading to the reform of the Dispute Settlement Understanding (DSU) was initiated. The Ministerial Conference in Doha provided the legal mandate (§30) to do so. Negotiations started in early March 2002 and were supposed to be concluded by end of May 2003. This has not been the case. The situation is quite ambivalent from a purely legal perspective right now: negotiators seem to take the view (WTO Doc. TN/DS/9 of 6 June 2003) that although the deadline for concluding negotiations has lapsed, they still have the mandate to ...


The Case For Auctioning Countermeasures In The Wto, Kyle Bagwell, Petros C. Mavroidis, Robert W. Staiger Jan 2003

The Case For Auctioning Countermeasures In The Wto, Kyle Bagwell, Petros C. Mavroidis, Robert W. Staiger

Faculty Scholarship

A prominent problem with the WTO dispute settlement procedures is the practical difficulty faced by small and developing countries in finding the capacity to effectively retaliate against trading partners that are in violation of their WTO commitments. In light of this problem, Mexico has proposed that retaliation rights be made tradeable.' We offer a first formal analysis of the possibility that retaliation rights within the WTO system be allocated through auctions. We show that the auctions exhibit externalities among bidders, and we characterize equilibrium bidder behavior under alternative auction formats. A key feature of auction format is whether the country ...


The Wto Legal System: Sources Of Law, David Palmeter, Petros C. Mavroidis Jan 1998

The Wto Legal System: Sources Of Law, David Palmeter, Petros C. Mavroidis

Faculty Scholarship

Modern discussions of the sources of international law usually begin with a reference to Article 38 (1) of the Statute of the International Court of Justice (ICJ), which provides:

The Court, whose function is to decide in accordance with international law such disputes as are submitted to it, shall apply:

  1. international conventions, whether general or particular, establishing rules expressly recognized by the contesting states;
  2. international custom as evidence of a general practice accepted as law;
  3. the general principles of law recognized by civilized nations;
  4. subject to the provisions of Article 59, judicial decisions and the teachings of the most highly ...