Has the US effectively crippled the World Trade Organization (WTO)?

December 16, 2019 – Nearly buried in today’s Wall Street Journal front page article, “Trade Policy Breaks With the Past,” it reports that, ”the US on Wednesday effectively crippled the Geneva-based WTO trade court launched in 1995 to prevent the kinds of trade tactics Mr. Trump has deployed to coerce trading partners to the bargaining table.”

WTO HQs imagejpg

The article continues to explain that its appeals court panel of judges no longer has enough members to issue decisions and enforce WTO rules. How? Over the past two years, the US has blocked the appointment of judges to the court coupled with two remaining members’ terms expiring last week.

Last week, the Council on Foreign Affairs reported, “Meanwhile, US President Donald J. Trump has criticized the WTO for what he sees as its weakness in confronting China’s trade abuses and constraints on US sovereignty. His administration has intentionally crippled the organization’s appeals body, ensuring that its decisions cannot be enforced and placing the future of global trade rules into doubt.”

Comments are closed.