IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Policy Choice versus Science in Regulating Animal Cloning under the WTO Law


  • Maria Weimer


After genetically modified organisms and nanotechnology, EU food regulators are currently facing the challenge of choosing an appropriate policy approach towards animal cloning for food supply. While different regulatory options are being discussed, the ultimate choice of the EU is likely to have ramifications for EU’s compliance with the international legal trade order of the WTO. In this paper I take the EU policy debate as a starting point to outline the main legal issues that future EU regulation on animal cloning could raise with regard to the most pertinent WTO Agreements, the GATT, the SPS Agreement, and the TBT Agreement. I argue that any future legal assessment of EU policy in this area should pay particular attention to the thorough delineation between the scopes of application of these agreements, since the choice of the applicable WTO regime will directly impact on the extent to which the EU enjoys regulatory autonomy to pursue its policy choice. In the light of the recent Panel report in EC-Biotech the applicability of the SPS Agreement also to future EU measures on animal cloning appears likely thereby resulting in strong constraints on EU policy choice. This appears problematic seeing that strong criticism is voiced against the extensive interpretation of the concept of an SPS measure, as undertaken by the Panel in EC-Biotech; and that doubts persist as to whether potential risks related to animal cloning can, in fact, be characterized as sanitary and phytosanitary risks.

Suggested Citation

  • Maria Weimer, 2010. "Policy Choice versus Science in Regulating Animal Cloning under the WTO Law," RECON Online Working Papers Series 29, RECON.
  • Handle: RePEc:erp:reconx:p0087

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    File Function: Full text
    Download Restriction: no

    More about this item


    GATT; international trade; non-discrimination; non-tariff barriers; regulation; regulatory politics; WTO;

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:


    Access and download statistics


    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:erp:reconx:p0087. 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: (Marit Eldholm). General contact details of provider: .

    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.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using 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.