Preventing Opportunistic Uncompliance by WTO Members
AbstractThe World Trade Organization's (WTO) Dispute Settlement Understanding is silent on the consequences for members if they comply with trade obligations, but later uncomply, resulting in similar violations as those giving rise to the original dispute. This article shows that WTO members can uncomply without facing economic consequences because the arbitrators that authorize the suspension of WTO concessions have a limited jurisdiction relative to compliance panels and because the DSU does not provide sanctions for past (in contrast to ongoing) violations. Members may thus delay compliance until immediately before panels assess their compliance record and then may uncomply because arbitrators cannot authorize the suspension of concessions for the measure to uncomply. Cases of uncompliance allow members to commit repeated violations with impunity. This contrasts with cases of non-compliance, where trade disputes eventually result in implementation of recommendations, compensation to the aggrieved member, or the suspension of concessions against the violating member. We identify the ongoing US -- Upland Cotton dispute as a potential case of uncompliance. WTO members have an opportunity to protect themselves from delayed compliance and uncompliance by seeking authorization to suspend concessions where the violating member has not taken measures within the timeframe given to comply. We show that because Brazil forfeited its rights to do so in the US -- Upland Cotton dispute through a sequencing agreement, the United States may have uncomplied without facing a countermeasure for certain cotton subsidies. Oxford University Press 2011, all rights reserved, Oxford University Press.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.
Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by Oxford University Press in its journal Journal of International Economic Law.
Volume (Year): 14 (2011)
Issue (Month): 2 (June)
Contact details of provider:
Postal: Oxford University Press, Great Clarendon Street, Oxford OX2 6DP, UK
Fax: 01865 267 985
Web page: http://www.jiel.oupjournals.org/
You can help add them by filling out this form.
reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.Access and download statisticsgeneral information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Oxford University Press) or (Christopher F. Baum).
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.