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Greening the WTO's Disputes Settlement Understanding: Opportunities and Risks

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Abstract

It is reasonable to ask whether the WTO’s rules may hamper the ability of national and sub-national governments to be genuine pacesetters in environmental law making. Environmentalists consider that the WTO’s disputes panels may encourage governments to converge to the relevant international standard for a particular risk regulation because such uniformity is likely to reduce the incidence of trade disputes. Proposals that go beyond environmental advocacy and greater transparency in the WTO’s disputes settlement process—changes such as a weakening of the sound science requirement and incorporating stronger forms of the precautionary principle into WTO agreements on biosecurity laws—reduce due process safeguards against disguised regulatory protectionism in New Zealand’s agricultural export markets.

Suggested Citation

  • Jim Rose, 2001. "Greening the WTO's Disputes Settlement Understanding: Opportunities and Risks," Treasury Working Paper Series 01/28, New Zealand Treasury.
  • Handle: RePEc:nzt:nztwps:01/28
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    File URL: http://www.treasury.govt.nz/publications/research-policy/wp/2001/01-28/twp01-28.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Sykes, Alan O, 1999. "The (Limited) Role of Regulatory Harmonization in International Goods and Services Markets," Journal of International Economic Law, Oxford University Press, vol. 2(1), pages 49-70, March.
    2. Kym Anderson, 1997. "Social Policy Dimensions of Economic Integration: Environmental and Labor Standards," NBER Chapters,in: Regionalism versus Multilateral Trade Arrangements, NBER-EASE Volume 6, pages 57-90 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Wallace E. Oates, 1999. "An Essay on Fiscal Federalism," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 37(3), pages 1120-1149, September.
    4. Sunstein, Cass R, 2000. "Cognition and Cost-Benefit Analysis," The Journal of Legal Studies, University of Chicago Press, vol. 29(2), pages 1059-1103, June.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    World Trade Organization; trade disputes; environment; conservation; New Zealand;

    JEL classification:

    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
    • F18 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Trade and Environment
    • K32 - Law and Economics - - Other Substantive Areas of Law - - - Energy, Environmental, Health, and Safety Law

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