World Trade Organization

Introduction

World Trade Organization - Research Guide International Law

The birth of the World Trade Organization (WTO) marked the end of an era in which international trade was governed by the 1947 General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT 1947). With the refusal of the United States Congress to ratify the Charter of the International Trade Organization (Havana Charter) GATT 1947 was the only means left for the regulation of international trade relations. It was originally conceived as a provisional multilateral agreement for tariff reduction without any reference to a specific institutional umbrella. In spite of its many shortcomings, GATT 1947 gradually evolved into a de facto international organization which helped establish a strong and prosperous multilateral trading system through many rounds of trade negotiations. Although GATT 1947 is now reduced to its original status as a multilateral agreement, its history of decisions, procedures and customary practices still form an important element for the interpretation and understanding of the WTO and its provisions. The World Trade Organization is the only global international organization dealing with the rules of trade between nations. At its heart are the WTO agreements, negotiated and signed by the bulk of the world’s trading nations and ratified in their parliaments. The goal is to help producers of goods and services, exporters, and importers conduct their business.

This Research Guide is intended as a starting point for research on the World Trade Organization. It provides the basic legal materials available in the Peace Palace Library, both in print and electronic format. Handbooks, leading articles, bibliographies, periodicals, serial publications and documents of interest are presented in the Selective Bibliography section. Links to the PPL Catalogue are inserted. The Library’s classification index code 140a. GATT/WTO and subject heading (keyword) World Trade Organization are instrumental for searching through the Catalogue. Special attention is given to our subscriptions on databases, e-journals, e-books and other electronic resources. Finally, this Research Guide features links to relevant websites and other online resources of particular interest.

Bibliography

Reference works

Books

Leading articles

Documents

 

Relevant Legal Texts:

Periodicals, serial publications

 

Bibliographies

New titles


1. Förderung erneuerbarer Energien und das Recht der WTO
Förderung erneuerbarer Energien und das Recht der WTO : eine welthandelsrechtliche Bewertung von Einspeisevergütungsmodellen zur Förderung der Stromerzeugung aus erneuerbaren Energien / James Kröger. - Baden-Baden : Nomos In: Internationale Dimensionen des Wirtschaftsrechts : Beiträge aus Sicht verschiedener Rechtsdisziplinen und Rechtsordnungen : Tagungsband zum 13. Graduiertentreffen im Internationalen Wirtschaftsrecht in Linz und Passau, 2012 / Kathrin Binder, Florian Eichel (Hrsg.), ISBN 9783832978372: (2013) - 2013
Keywords: World Trade Organization, General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade, International trade, Subsidies and countervailing measures, Renewable energy resources, Electricity, Tariffs,

2. From North to South: Legal Pathways to Stimulate Biodiversity Conservation in Developing Countries through Transboundary Trade in Biodiversity Resources
From North to South: Legal Pathways to Stimulate Biodiversity Conservation in Developing Countries through Transboundary Trade in Biodiversity Resources / Jonathan Verschuuren. - Leiden ; Bosten : Brill/Nijhoff. - Page 235-251 In: Transboundary Governance of Biodiversity / edited by Louis J. Kotzé and Thilo Marauhn, ISBN 9789004273849: (2014), Page 235-251. - 2014
Keywords: Developing countries, World Trade Organization, Convention on Biological Diversity (Rio de Janeiro, 5 June 1992), Environmental protection, Natural resources, Biodiversity, Sustainable development, Environmental law, Transfrontier co-operation,

3. Direito Econômico Internacional e Comércio Marítimo: Visão Geral
Direito Econômico Internacional e Comércio Marítimo: Visão Geral / Osvaldo Agripino de Castro Junior. - São Paulo : IOB Informações Objetivas Publicações Jurídicas Ltda.. - Page 341-402 In: Temas Atuais do Direito Aduaneiro Brasileiro e Notas sobre o Direito Internacional: Teoria e Prática / Demes Britto, coordenador, ISBN 9788537916223: vol. 1. - 2012
Keywords: World Trade Organization, International economic law, Economic development, New international economic order, International trade, Competition,

4. Princípios do Direito Econômico Internacional e Medidas de Defesa Comercial
Princípios do Direito Econômico Internacional e Medidas de Defesa Comercial / Osvaldo Agripino de Castro Junior. - São Paulo : IOB Informações Objetivas Publicações Jurídicas Ltda.. - Page 403-443 In: Temas Atuais do Direito Aduaneiro Brasileiro e Notas sobre o Direito Internacional: Teoria e Prática / Demes Britto, coordenador, ISBN 9788537916223: vol. 1. - 2012
Keywords: World Trade Organization, International economic law, Principles, International trade,

5. Developing Countries and the WTO Dispute Settlement Mechanism: an Examination of the Underutilized Crown Jewel
Developing Countries and the WTO Dispute Settlement Mechanism: an Examination of the Underutilized Crown Jewel / Rahmat Mohamad In: AALCO Journal of International Law = ISSN 2319-2895: vol. 2, issue 1, page 1-16. - 2013
Keywords: Developing countries, World Trade Organization, International trade, Judicial settlement of international disputes,

6. The Doha Development Round of the WTO Negotiations: a Possible Future Direction
The Doha Development Round of the WTO Negotiations: a Possible Future Direction / Yasukata Fukahori In: AALCO Journal of International Law = ISSN 2319-2895: vol. 2, issue 1, page 25-36. - 2013
Keywords: Developing countries, World Trade Organization, Doha, International trade, Development, Multilateral trade negotiations,

7. Regionalism and the Constitutionalization of Global Trade Governance
Regionalism and the Constitutionalization of Global Trade Governance : the Legal Relationship Between Regional Trade Agreements and the WTO / Dencho Georgiev. - Sofija : Bălgarska asociacija po meždunarodno pravo In: Trudove po meždunarodno pravo / Bălgarska asociacija po meždunarodno pravo = Studies on international law / Bulgarian Association of International Law = Travaux de droit international / Association Bulgare de Droit International = ISSN 0861-0541: vol. 8. - 2013
Keywords: World Trade Organization, General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade, Regional trade agreements, International trade, Law of treaties, Primacy,

8. Regional trade agreements under the world trade organization law and under public international law
Regional trade agreements under the world trade organization law and under public international law / Jacques H. J. Bourgeois, Svetlana Chobanova. - Sofija : Bălgarska asociacija po meždunarodno pravo In: Trudove po meždunarodno pravo / Bălgarska asociacija po meždunarodno pravo = Studies on international law / Bulgarian Association of International Law = Travaux de droit international / Association Bulgare de Droit International = ISSN 0861-0541: vol. 8. - 2013
Keywords: World Trade Organization, General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade, Regional trade agreements, International trade, Law of treaties,

9. Article XXIV as a Gateway for Trade Discrimination
Article XXIV as a Gateway for Trade Discrimination : a Longer Perspective / Kim Van der Borght. - Sofija : Bălgarska asociacija po meždunarodno pravo In: Trudove po meždunarodno pravo / Bălgarska asociacija po meždunarodno pravo = Studies on international law / Bulgarian Association of International Law = Travaux de droit international / Association Bulgare de Droit International = ISSN 0861-0541: vol. 8. - 2013
Keywords: World Trade Organization, General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade, Most-favoured-nation clause, Regional trade agreements, International trade,

10. The UNESCO Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions and its Operational Guidelines
The UNESCO Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions and its Operational Guidelines / Souheil El Zein. - Leiden ; Boston : Martinus Nijhoff Publishers. - Page 340-367 In: Law, Politics and Rights : Essays in Memory of Kader Asmal / edited by Tiyanjana Maluwa, ISBN 9789004249011: (2014), Page 340-367. - 2014
Keywords: Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions (20 October 2005), Traditional cultural expressions, United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, World Trade Organization,

11. Supplying Compliance: Why and When the United States Complies with WTO Rulings
Supplying Compliance: Why and When the United States Complies with WTO Rulings / Rachel Brewster, Adam Chilton In: Yale Journal of International Law = ISSN 0889-7743: vol. 39, issue 2, page 201-246. - 2014
Keywords: United States of America, World Trade Organization, International trade, Judicial settlement of international disputes, Decisions, Compliance,

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  • Struck, C., Product Regulations and Standards in WTO Law, Alphen aan den Rijn, Kluwer Law International, 2014.

    Struck, C., Product Regulations and Standards in WTO Law, Alphen aan den Rijn, Kluwer Law International, 2014.

    The interrelation of products, the human body, and the environment presents a fundamental challenge to the international trade regulatory system. In an ever more integrated global market, biotechnology, nanotechnology, and other increasingly prevalent methods of processing food and pharmaceuticals give rise not only to trade issues, but also to health, safety, and security concerns. Product-related cross-border issues such as the spread of disease, the use of riskrelevant substances or components, and safety-related construction issues are increasingly on the agenda for governments and international organizations. A promising response to this challenge – presented in this book – is offered by a harmonization of the multiplicity of rules, standards, guidelines, and recommendations that characterizes the current system of international trade regulation. Based primarily on the author’s thorough research on the rules on harmonization within the World Trade Organization (WTO) Agreements on the Application of Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures (SPS Agreement) and on Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT Agreement), this book sets forth a workable scheme for the harmonization of public and private regulations and standards – a scheme that, the author shows, is sure to be helpful in reducing non-tariff barriers and achieving further integration of international markets.

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  • Gantz, D.A., Liberalizing International Trade after Doha: Multilateral, Plurilateral, Regional and Unilateral Initiatives, New York, Cambridge University Press, 2013.

    Gantz, D.A., Liberalizing International Trade after Doha, Multilateral, Plurilateral, Regional and Unilateral Initiatives, New York, Cambridge University Press, 2013.

    After ten years the Doha Development Round is effectively dead. A broadly comprehensive round of trade negotiations reminiscent of the Doha agenda or the Uruguay Round will not likely be attempted again in the foreseeable future. Although some have suggested that Doha’s demise threatens the continued existence of the GATT/WTO system, even with some risks of increasing protectionism, the United States, the European Union, Japan, Brazil, China, and India, among others, have far too much to lose to make abandoning the WTO a rational option. If there is reason for cautious optimism post-Doha it is because there are alternatives to a comprehensive package of new or amended multilateral agreements. In addition to likely consensus on a few noncontroversial multilateral elements of Doha, the alternatives include existing and future “plurilateral” trade agreements, new or revised regional trade agreements covering both goods and services, and liberalized national trade laws and regulations in the WTO member nations. This book discusses the alternatives, which although less than ideal, may provide an impetus for continuing trade liberalization both among willing members and in some instances worldwide.

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  • VanGrasstek, C., The History and Future of the World Trade Organization, Geneva, World Trade Organization, 2013.

    Vangrasstek, C., The History and Future of the World Trade Organization, Geneva, World Trade Organization, 2013.

    This volume offers a comprehensive account of the establishment of the World Trade Organization. It focuses on those who shaped its creation as well as those who have influenced its evolution. The book examines trade negotiations, the WTO dispute settlement role, and the presence of coalitions and groupings within the WTO. It also examines the process of joining the organization, as well as many other topics including what lies ahead for the organization.

     

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  • Watson, J.K.R, The WTO and the Environment: Development of Competence beyond Trade, London, Routledge, 2013.

    Watson, J.K.R, The WTO and the Environment: Development of Competence beyond Trade, London, Routledge, 2013.

    This book is a review of the development of the WTO dispute resolution procedure and the power and influence it has gained over the practises of the member countries as well as in other international treaties. The book addresses the development of environmental competency in the WTO and examines the arguments of those who oppose WTO rule making with impacts on the environment. The WTO’s interactions with multilateral environmental agreements are considered and recent WTO cases including the 2011 US/Mexico tuna dispute and the US sea turtles decision are analysed in detail. In examining how an international organisation which was established with a specific purpose in mind has come to interact in fields beyond its original remit, James Watson demonstrates how the dispute resolution system at the WTO has come to work in a judicialised manner, operating with an informal system of precedent. This has led to the contracting parties placing more reliance on the decisions of the dispute panels and appeal body when considering policy options, with WTO rulings increasingly influencing the behaviour of national legislatures in regard to the environment. The book goes on to make concrete recommendations, based on existing practise in the WTO dispute resolution procedure, which could enhance decision making in environmental cases heard by the WTO. The book argues that this could be achieved with straightforward amendments to the WTO, based on existing practices endorsed under the WTO for other policy considerations. The WTO and the Environment will be of particular interest to academics and students of International and Environmental law.

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  • Wilkinson, R. and J. Scott (eds.), Trade, Poverty, Development: Getting beyond the WTO's Doha Deadlock, London, Routledge, 2013.

    Wilkinson, R. and J. Scott (eds.), Trade, Poverty, Development: Getting beyond the WTO's Doha Deadlock, London, Routledge, 2013.

    This work seeks to look beyond the seemingly endless deadlock in the WTO’s Doha round of trade negotiations that began in November 2001 and were first scheduled to conclude by January 1, 2005. As well as offering an incisive analysis of the ills of the round, with particular attention directed at the poorest and least developed countries, the book expands on how the round could be moved forward elaborating on the Statement on the Doha Development Agenda that was negotiated in Johannesburg. The work as a whole provides the reader with a critical analysis of the implications of the negotiations for development and poverty reduction as well as proposals for moving beyond the current impasse. The volume brings together contributions from serving and former ambassadors to the WTO, key practitioners, and civil society representatives along with those of leading scholars. Each chapter explores an area of critical importance to the round; and together they stand as an important contribution to debates not only about the Doha round but also about the role of trade in the amelioration of poverty in the poorest countries.

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  • Farrell, J.E., The Interface of International Trade Law and Taxation: Defining the Role of the WTO, Amsterdam, IBFD, 2013.

    Farrell, J.E., The Interface of International Trade Law and Taxation : Defining the Role of the WTO, Amsterdam, IBFD, 2013.
    This book explores the ill-defined and oft-underestimated relationship between the World Trade Organization (WTO) and taxation. By adopting a two-pronged approach, the relationship is examined in terms of the extent to which the WTO legal framework exerts influence upon domestic tax law and international tax policy, and whether it is appropriate for the WTO to play a regulatory role in the field of taxation.
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Database

Blogs

  • 400th Trade Dispute for World Trade Organization (WTO)

    On 1 January 2010 the World Trade Organization (WTO) will celebrate its 15th birthday. Shortly before the anniversary the 7th Session of the WTO Ministerial Conference will take place for the second time in Geneva, Switzerland, from 30 November to 2 December 2009. Trade ministers will be discussing the general theme “The WTO, the Multilateral Trading System and the Current Global Economic Environment”.

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  • WTO launches new database on regional trade agreements

    On 14 january 2009 the database was launched and can be accessed in English, French and Spanish. The database can be searched by country, region, legal provision, date of notification or entry into force of the RTA. Summary tables of all RTAs currently in force, containing various types of information, can be easily exported by users of the database.

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