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Trade remedies and World Trade Organization dispute settlement : Why are so few challenged?

  • Bown, Chad P.

Antidumping and related trade remedies are the most popular policy instruments that many of the largest importing countries in the World Trade Organization (WTO) system use to restrict international trade. While such trade remedies are also frequent targets of dispute settlement activity under the WTO, given that Panel and Appellate Body rulings have almost invariably found that some aspect of each reviewed remedy was inconsistent with WTO obligations, an open research question is why aren't more remedies targeted by dispute settlement? The author provides a first empirical investigation of the trade remedy and WTO dispute settlement interaction by focusing on determinants of WTO members'decisions of whether to formally challenge U.S. trade remedies imposed between 1992 and 2003. He provides evidence that it is not only the size of the economic market at stake and the capacity to retaliate under potential DSU (dispute settlement understanding)-authorized sanctions that influence the litigation decision of whether to formally challenge a measure at the WTO. The author also finds that if the negatively affected foreign industry has the capacity to directly retaliate through a reciprocal antidumping investigation and measure of its own, its government is less likely to pursue the case on its behalf at the WTO. This is consistent with the theory that potential complainants may be avoiding WTO litigation in favor of pursuing reciprocal antidumping and hence"vigilante justice."

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Paper provided by The World Bank in its series Policy Research Working Paper Series with number 3540.

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Date of creation: 01 Mar 2005
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:3540
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  1. Chad P. Bown, 2005. "Participation in," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 19(2), pages 287-310.
  2. Thomas J. Prusa, 1999. "On the Spread and Impact of Antidumping," NBER Working Papers 7404, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. James P. Durling, 2003. "Deference, But Only When Due: WTO Review of Anti-Dumping Measures," Journal of International Economic Law, Oxford University Press, vol. 6(1), pages 125-153, March.
  4. Blonigen, Bruce A. & Bown, Chad P., 2003. "Antidumping and retaliation threats," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(2), pages 249-273, August.
  5. Tarullo, Daniel K., 2003. "Paved with good intentions: the dynamic effects of WTO review of anti-dumping action," World Trade Review, Cambridge University Press, vol. 2(03), pages 373-393, November.
  6. Robert M. Feinberg & Kara M. Olson, 2004. "The Spread of Antidumping Regimes and the Role of Retaliation in Filings," International Trade 0411003, EconWPA.
  7. Bown, Chad P., 2002. "Why are safeguards under the WTO so unpopular?," World Trade Review, Cambridge University Press, vol. 1(01), pages 47-62, March.
  8. Chad Bown, 2013. "How Different Are Safeguards from Antidumping? Evidence from US Trade Policies Toward Steel," Review of Industrial Organization, Springer, vol. 42(4), pages 449-481, June.
  9. Bruce A. Blonigen & Thomas J. Prusa, 2001. "Antidumping," NBER Working Papers 8398, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Holmes, Peter & Rollo, Jim & Young, Alasdair R., 2003. "Emerging trends in WTO dispute settlement : back to the GATT?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3133, The World Bank.
  11. Bagwell,K. & Staiger,R.W., 2004. "Enforcement, private political pressure and the GATT/WTO escape clause," Working papers 23, Wisconsin Madison - Social Systems.
  12. Chad P. Bown, 2004. "On the Economic Success of GATT/WTO Dispute Settlement," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 86(3), pages 811-823, August.
  13. Sykes, Alan O., 2003. "The safeguards mess: a critique of WTO jurisprudence," World Trade Review, Cambridge University Press, vol. 2(03), pages 261-295, November.
  14. Hansen, Wendy L & Prusa, Thomas J, 1996. "Cumulation and ITC Decision-Making: The Sum of the Parts Is Greater Than the Whole," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 34(4), pages 746-69, October.
  15. Prusa, Thomas J., 1992. "Why are so many antidumping petitions withdrawn?," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 33(1-2), pages 1-20, August.
  16. Martin, Alberto & Vergote, Wouter, 2004. "Antidumping: Welfare Enhancing Retaliation?," MPRA Paper 5416, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  17. 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.
  18. Maurizio Zanardi, 2004. "Anti-dumping: What are the Numbers to Discuss at Doha?," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 27(3), pages 403-433, 03.
  19. Van de Ven, Wynand P. M. M. & Van Praag, Bernard M. S., 1981. "The demand for deductibles in private health insurance : A probit model with sample selection," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 17(2), pages 229-252, November.
  20. John Greenwald, 2003. "WTO Dispute Settlement: an Exercise in Trade Law Legislation?," Journal of International Economic Law, Oxford University Press, vol. 6(1), pages 113-124, March.
  21. Kyle Bagwell & Robert W. Staiger, 2004. "The Economics of the World Trading System," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262524341, June.
  22. Bown, Chad P. & Hoekman, Bernard & Ozden, Caglar, 2003. "The pattern of US antidumping: the path from initial filing to WTO dispute settlement," World Trade Review, Cambridge University Press, vol. 2(03), pages 349-371, November.
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