This is the third volume in the series Columbia Studies on WTO Law and Policy. Our focus this time is on the Law and Economics of Contingent Protection. Our invited authors contributed chapters on antidumping, subsidies and countervailing measures, and safeguards.
Wouters and Coppens provide insight into the World Trade Organization (WTO) multilateral disciplines on subsidies and on measures taken to respond to subsidies (i.e., countervailing duties [CVDs]). These disciplines are articulated in the GATT 1994, the Agreement on Subsidies and Countervailing Duties (SCM Agreement), as well as the Agreement on Agriculture (AoA). After an overview of the historical and legal context of the SCM Agreement, the authors provide a systematic legal analysis of its main provisions, integrating the substantial amount of relevant case law. Finally, the specific disciplines for agricultural subsidies, as spelled out in the AoA in interaction with the SCM Agreement, are clarified.
Howse takes issue with the decision of the WTO Membership to abandon the so-called nonactionable subsidies, that is, subsidies against which no reaction by affected Members was permissible. These subsidies lapsed in 2001. Howse takes the view that this decision was not well thought out, and claims that developing countries might be the losers here. He offers arguments in favor of reinstating this category in the current SCM Agreement.
Francois provides an economist's reaction to the current regulatory framework regarding the calculation of benefit stemming from the payment of subsidy.