The World Trade Organization Today : China, Changes, and Challenges

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  • Professor Julien Chaisse explains that since as early as 2016, the US began blocking reappointments of Appellate Body (AB) members until now, when there is only one AB member left on the panel. As the AB needs at least three AB Members to compose a tribunal to hear an appeal, currently, no appeals can be heard. This leads to catastrophic ramifications. Without the possibility of appeal, some parties will be unable to defend themselves through WTO procedures. Moreover, knowing that there can be no appeals, some Members might think it is not worth the time and effort to initiate any new complaints. However, these problems are unlikely to signify the end of the WTO. Instead, it is likely to lead to changes in the DSM, particularly regarding the enforcement of first instance decisions, i.e. decisions made by the first layer of the DSM. If a first instance decision cannot be appealed, that decision will remain binding and enforceable. This may result in a bilateral enforcement, which is a complicated concept.
Period22 Jun 2020

Media coverage

TitleThe World Trade Organization Today : China, Changes, and Challenges
DescriptionProfessor Julien Chaisse explains that since as early as 2016, the US began blocking reappointments of Appellate Body (AB) members until now, when there is only one AB member left on the panel. As the AB needs at least three AB Members to compose a tribunal to hear an appeal, currently, no appeals can be heard. This leads to catastrophic ramifications. Without the possibility of appeal, some parties will be unable to defend themselves through WTO procedures. Moreover, knowing that there can be no appeals, some Members might think it is not worth the time and effort to initiate any new complaints. However, these problems are unlikely to signify the end of the WTO. Instead, it is likely to lead to changes in the DSM, particularly regarding the enforcement of first instance decisions, i.e. decisions made by the first layer of the DSM. If a first instance decision cannot be appealed, that decision will remain binding and enforceable. This may result in a bilateral enforcement, which is a complicated concept.
Persons
Media name/outletPublic Jurist
PlaceHong Kong
Degree of recognitionNational
Media typePrint
Date22/06/20
Linkwww.hkuglc.org/government-and-laws-committee-hku-public-jurist