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The Evolution and Utilization of the GATT/WTO Dispute Settlement Mechanism

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  • Pao-li Chang

    (SMU)

Abstract

This paper provides a theoretical framework of dispute settlement to explain the surge in blocking incidence of GATT panel reports during the 1980s and the variations in withdrawn incidence versus total disputes across different decades of the GATT regime. The study first suggests the role of the degree of legal controversy over a panel ruling in determining countries' incentives to block (appeal) a panel report under the GATT (WTO) regime. The study then analyzes the effects of political power on countries' incentives to use, and their interactions in using, the dispute settlement mechanism, when two-sided asymmetric information exists regarding panel judgement.

Suggested Citation

  • Pao-li Chang, 2007. "The Evolution and Utilization of the GATT/WTO Dispute Settlement Mechanism," Trade Working Papers 22062, East Asian Bureau of Economic Research.
  • Handle: RePEc:eab:tradew:22062
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    File URL: http://www.eaber.org/node/22062
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Lucian Arye Bebchuk, 1984. "Litigation and Settlement under Imperfect Information," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 15(3), pages 404-415, Autumn.
    2. Kara Leitner & Simon Lester, 2006. "WTO Dispute Settlement from 1995 to 2005 -- A Statistical Analysis," Journal of International Economic Law, Oxford University Press, vol. 9(1), pages 219-231, March.
    3. Butler, Monika & Hauser, Heinz, 2000. "The WTO Dispute Settlement System: First Assessment from an Economic Perspective," Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 16(2), pages 503-533, October.
    4. I.P.L. P'ng, 1983. "Strategic Behavior in Suit, Settlement, and Trial," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 14(2), pages 539-550, Autumn.
    5. Cooter, Robert D & Rubinfeld, Daniel L, 1989. "Economic Analysis of Legal Disputes and Their Resolution," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 27(3), pages 1067-1097, September.
    6. Barry Nalebuff, 1987. "Credible Pretrial Negotiation," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 18(2), pages 198-210, Summer.
    7. Daughety, Andrew F. & Reinganum, Jennifer F., 1994. "Settlement negotiations with two-sided asymmetric information: Model duality, information distribution, and efficiency," International Review of Law and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 14(3), pages 283-298, September.
    8. Chad P . Bown, 2002. "The Economics of Trade Disputes, the GATT's Article XXIII, and the WTO's Dispute Settlement Understanding," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 14(3), pages 283-323, November.
    9. Bebchuk, Lucian Arye, 1988. "Suing Solely to Extract a Settlement Offer," The Journal of Legal Studies, University of Chicago Press, vol. 17(2), pages 437-450, June.
    10. Urs Schweizer, 1989. "Litigation and Settlement under Two-Sided Incomplete Information," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 56(2), pages 163-177.
    11. Horn, Henrik & Mavroidis, Petros C & Nordström, Håkan, 1999. "Is The Use Of The WTO Dispute Settlement System Biased?," CEPR Discussion Papers 2340, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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    Cited by:

    1. Pao-Li Chang, 2004. "The Politics of WTO Enforcement Mechanisms," Econometric Society 2004 Australasian Meetings 117, Econometric Society.
    2. Fabien BESSON & Racem MEHDI, "undated". "Is WTO Dispute Settlement System Biased Against Developing Countries? An Empirical Analysis," EcoMod2004 330600022, EcoMod.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Dispute Settlement; legal controversy; block; appeal; two-sided asymmetric information; political cost;

    JEL classification:

    • F02 - International Economics - - General - - - International Economic Order and Integration
    • F13 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Trade Policy; International Trade Organizations
    • K33 - Law and Economics - - Other Substantive Areas of Law - - - International Law
    • K41 - Law and Economics - - Legal Procedure, the Legal System, and Illegal Behavior - - - Litigation Process
    • K42 - Law and Economics - - Legal Procedure, the Legal System, and Illegal Behavior - - - Illegal Behavior and the Enforcement of Law

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