Regional trade agreement dispute settlement

These pages collect information on disputes brought under regional trade agreements (RTAs). It follows up on the chapter on RTA dispute settlement (PDF text here) in Trade Agreement Policies for Development: A Handbook (JP Chauffour & JC Maur, eds., World Bank 2011). See also a May 2018 think piece by me on Designing Common but Differentiated Rules for Regional Trade Disputes for the RTA Exchange Project on Global Economic Governance.

Pages listed below cover major RTA dispute settlement fora, and known RTA disputes, with links to panel decisions and information on outcomes when available. Coverage of African regional trade courts and disputes is missing and will be upgraded soon. If you have any corrections or additions, please email me at info (at) porgeslaw.com or send me a comment via the Contact page on this website. 

QUICK LINKS: NORTH AMERICA  (CUSFTA, NAFTA, Canada AIT); LATIN AMERICA  (DR-CAFTA, Peru-US TPA, Mexico-Triángulo del Norte FTA, Andean Community, Mercosur, ALADI Economic Complementation Agreements); EUROPE/MIDEAST/AFRICA (EU, EU RTAs, EFTA, Israel-US FTA, African Regional Trade Courts); ASIA/OCEANIA (e.g. Korea-US FTA). Cross-regional RTAs are listed under the region of their first partner in alphabetical order

RECENT NEWS:

  • 9 July 2019: US holds consultations with Korea under Korea-US FTA chapter on Competition-Related Matters. Link: US press release.

  • 4 July 2019: EU requests a panel under the EU-Korea Free Trade Agreement concerning labor commitments in FTA Chapter 13. Links: EU press release; EU panel request.

  • 20 June 2019: EC requests a panel under the EU-Ukraine Association Agreement in its dispute concerning Ukraine’s export ban on unprocessed wood. Links: EU press release; EU panel request. See also 4 July blogpost by Iulianna Romanchyshyna on the International Economic Law & Policy Blog, discussing the Ukrainian measures, the EU claims, and possible Ukrainian defenses.

  • 15 March 2019: US requests consultations with Korea under the chapter on Competition-Related Matters of the Korea-US (KORUS) Free Trade Agreement, concerning procedures in competition hearings held by the Korea Fair Trade Commission (KFTC). US argues that recently drafted amendments to Korea’s “Monopoly Regulations and Fair Trade Act” fail to address U.S. concerns that KFTC hearings deny U.S. firms due process rights under the KORUS agreement (opportunity to review and rebut evidence) that are necessary to secure a fair competition hearing in Korea. Link: USTR press release.

  • 16 January 2019: EU requests formal consultations with Ukraine under the EU-Ukraine Association Agreement concerning Ukraine’s failure to eliminate a long-standing ban on exports of unprocessed wood. Links: EU press release; EU consultation request.

  • 4 January 2019: US requests environment consultations with Peru under Chapter 18 on Environment of Peru-US Trade Promotion Agreement; 9 April 2019, US announces successful resolution of its concerns as result of decree by Peru’s Council of Ministers.

  • 18 December 2018: EU requests formal consultations with Republic of Korea concerning labor commitments of EU-Korea trade agreement. Concerns expressed included respect for ILO principles of freedom of association and right to collective bargaining, and failure to ratify four ILO conventions (two on freedom of association/right to collective bargaining, and two on forced labor). EU press release and consultation request.

  • 23 July 2018: Canada initiates dispute under NAFTA Chapter 20 concerning President Trump’s decision to include imports of Canadian solar panels in the January 2018 US safeguard action on solar panels under Section 201 of the Trade Act of 1974. Global Affairs Canada press release; consultation request.

  • 27 June 2017 release of Panel Report on Guatemala compliance with labor obligations under CAFTA-DR.

Last edited: 10 July 2019