THE WTO AS A LEGAL SYSTEM: Essays on International Trade Law & Policy

David Palmeter

In this collection of 23 essays, David Palmeter, a partner in the Washington DC office of Sidley, Austin, Brown & Wood, offers the observations of a seasoned practitioner scholar on a wide range of international trade law and policy issues, from trade remedies to regionalism and rules of origin, to the World Trade Organization, which is the subject of 12 of the essays.

The essays bring a distinctive historical and philosophical perspective to the leading international trade issues of our time.  The author considers NAFTA in the historical context of Mexican-US relations, examines the WTO’s trade protection regime by the standards of justice put forward by John Rawls, and, in the volume’s title essay, analyzes the WTO as a legal system in light of H.L.A. Hart’s criteria for a mature legal system.  Other essays in the volume consider such subjects as import quotas and why they should not be auctioned;  why protectionism is still alive; inherent problems with regional free trade agreements; the environment and trade; and national sovereignty and the WTO.  All of the essays benefit from the author’s perspective as a practitioner as well as a scholar, and from his clear, jargon-free writing style.

David Palmeter has practiced international trade law for more than 30 years, and has been involved in GATT and WTO dispute settlement for most of that time.  He was involved in WTO dispute settlement from the beginning of the organization, advising Members in the very first case brought under the WTO as well as the first case to go through the full panel and appellate processes.

He has lectured on WTO and trade policy matters at American, Columbia and Georgetown and George Washington Universities and at Dartmouth College in the United States.  In Europe, he has lectured at The College of Europe in Bruges, the European University Institute in Florence, and at the Universities of Berne, Liége, Neuchâtel and St. Gallen.  He is a member of the faculty of the World Trade Institute’s Program for Advanced Studies in International Law and Economics at the Joint Center of the Universities of Berne, Neuchâtel, and Fribourg, Switzerland.

From 1989 to 1993, he was chairman of the International Bar Association’s Trade and Customs Law Subcommittee of the Antitrust and Trade Law Committee, and from 1994 to 1998 was the Committee’s Liaison to GATT, the WTO and the United Nations Committee for Trade and Development (UNCTAD).

ISBN 10:1 874698 34 1

ISBN 13: 978 1 874698 34 0

•  Hardback  • 371 pp  • £125.00