Title

Remarks

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

2000

Abstract

The limits of international trade must be understood within the context of the institutional framework of the WTO, in particular, the decision-making and dispute settlement processes. The WTO dispute settlement rules are contained in the Dispute Settlement Understanding (DSU), which is Annex 2 to the WTO agreement. The DSU includes some comments on the philosophy, the direction and the purposes of the dispute settlement procedures. Article 3.2 of the DSU has some very interesting phrases. One of those phrases (roughly paraphrased) says, ''None of the reports of the dispute settlement procedure should result in a change, addition, or subtraction from the rights and obligations of the members." Some have pointed to that clause as a warning against judicial activism. The panelists and Appellate Body members should not be changing the direction of the system in terms of its basic goals. Any changes to the direction of the system are to be left in the hands of the sovereign states, the nation states, and the members. I interpret Article 3.2 to mean: "Be careful."

Publication Citation

94 Am. Soc'y Int'l L. Proc. 222-224 (2000)