World Trade Organization

The World Trade Organization (WTO) dispute settlement body ruled that the tariffs imposed by the U.S. on imports from China are inconsistent with the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT), and recommended that the U.S. “bring its measures into conformity” with its obligations under the GATT.  Beginning in 2018, at the direction of President Trump, the U.S. imposed tariffs on $400 billion worth of imports from China over 4 different lists or tranches.  The U.S. and China negotiated a “phase one” trade deal earlier this year, however, most of the tariffs were still left in place.

The WTO panel concluded that the U.S. failed to demonstrate that the tariff measures are justified under Article XX(a) of the GATT 1994.  As a result, the panel found the U.S. tariff measures to be inconsistent with Articles I:1, II:1(a) and II:1(b) of GATT 1994.  In other words, the WTO found that the U.S. tariffs on China were discriminatory and excessive, and the U.S. failed to present justification for an exemption that could have legally allowed for the tariffs.
Continue Reading WTO Rules that U.S. Section 301 Tariffs on Chinese Imports Violate International Trade Rules

USTR Proposes New Tariffs on EU Products under Section 301

The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) announced on July 1, 2019 a proposed list of tariffs on approximately $4 billion worth of products from the European Union (EU). This is a supplemental list to the April 12, 2019 proposed tariffs with an approximate trade value of $12 billion.

According to USTR, this action is designed to pressure the EU to implement the World Trade Organization’s (WTO) Dispute Settlement Body recommendations in regard to the United States’ WTO dispute against the EU’s subsidies on large civil aircraft.

Interested parties can appear at a public hearing or file comments on the proposed list.
Continue Reading July Trade Law Update: Presidential Actions

Venezuela recently  initiated a World Trade Organization (“WTO”)  complaint against U.S. sanctions, claiming that the United States has “imposed certain coercive trade-restrictive measures on the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela in
Continue Reading Venezuela Files Complaint Challenging U.S. Sanctions at the WTO