IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/bpj/lawdev/v2y2009i1n2.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

To What Extent Should Labor and Environmental Standards Be Linked to Trade?

Author

Listed:
  • Shahin Magda

    (Trade-Related Assistance Center, American Chamber, Egypt)

Abstract

The re-emergence of the ever-lingering trade linkage debate, falling between the prevailing financial crisis unprecedented in its worldwide implications and the persistent failure of the negotiations of the Doha Development Agenda (DDA), underscores the contentiousness of incorporating non-trade values on labor and the environment as standards in the rules-based trading system. Is the World Trade Organization (WTO) ready and well disposed to enter into full-fledged negotiations to devise additional rules to deal with labor and the environment? Is the timing ripe to add new obligations onto member states when they are struggling with the "development round" and there is hardly an end in sight?This paper assesses the `real possibility' and the `extent' to which social and environmental standards should be incorporated in the rules-based trading system. The paper argues that at present there is no need for elaboration or the explicit accommodation of particular environmental or labor standards within WTO agreements. Nor is there any indication that consensus on the content of such standards could be achieved. The constructive ambiguity which is so characteristic to multilateralism at play, and the provisions in existing WTO agreements, in particular General Exceptions Article XX, already provide sufficient and flexible accommodation for these key values. The inclusion of specific and rigid standards governing non-trade matters in the WTO would be opening a Pandora's Box and if hastily addressed could have long-term and dangerous implications for the system as a whole, and its developing country members in particular.

Suggested Citation

  • Shahin Magda, 2009. "To What Extent Should Labor and Environmental Standards Be Linked to Trade?," The Law and Development Review, De Gruyter, vol. 2(1), pages 28-52, January.
  • Handle: RePEc:bpj:lawdev:v:2:y:2009:i:1:n:2
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://www.degruyter.com/view/j/ldr.2009.2.1/ldr.2009.2.1.1012/ldr.2009.2.1.1012.xml?format=INT
    Download Restriction: For access to full text, subscription to the journal or payment for the individual article is required.

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. repec:dau:papers:123456789/255 is not listed on IDEAS
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:bpj:lawdev:v:2:y:2009:i:1:n:2. See general 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: (Peter Golla). General contact details of provider: https://www.degruyter.com .

    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 CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc 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 RePEc Author Service 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.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.