The World Trade Organization (WTO) faces a problem: the accumulation of unresolved disputes.
Quoted by Reuters, Tuesday (03/10/2023), since the end of 2019, that is to say after the United States blocked the appointment of new judges to the WTO Appellate Body due to legal problems, up to 29 cases were left unresolved. sleeping. This is also a problem with the dispute resolution system.
Filings include China, Dominican Republic, India, Indonesia, Morocco, Pakistan, South Korea and the United States.
“No more deception, no more pretending to appeal,” former deputy director-general Alan Wolff told a WTO conference last month.
He also urged countries to postpone filing new appeals from 2024, when WTO members have committed to resolving the issue.
The WTO itself has warned that the polycrisis of the pandemic, the war in Ukraine and inflation could weaken confidence in globalization. The impact is greater disregard for global trade regulations among WTO members.
Last month, they warned that a wave of unilateral measures, if left unchecked, would fragment the global economy and wipe out 5% of global income.
Import restrictions have been eased since 2018, when then-US President Donald Trump imposed tariffs on goods from China and other countries. However, export restrictions offset the reduction in customs duties.
These restrictions averaged 21 per year between 2016 and 2019, but increased to 139 last year.
This has raised concerns at the WTO. These policies target export restrictions such as those on Indian rice and green technology subsidies such as the Inflation Reduction Act in the United States with a bias towards production in North America, or on electric cars in China which are the subject of an investigation by the European Union. Union.
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