January 22, 2009
China brings first case to WTO dispute resolution
The case is against the US; according to the Financial Times report on the case, it involves four sets of parallel anti-dumping and anti-subsidy duties imposed by the US on two types of steel pipe, pneumatic off-road tyres and laminated woven sacks. I'm not sure that this is the first time China has set the dispute resolution process in motion - you have to start with a request for consultations - but apparently it's the first time the matter has gotten to this stage.
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So far there have been three dispute settlement procedures requested by China.
On 26 March 2002, China (WT/DS252) requested consultations with the United States also with regard to the definitive safeguard measures imposed by the US on imports of certain steel products. The European Communities were the first to complain against US measures. A panel and an appellate body panel report are available on the WTO website. See http://www.wto.org/english/tratop_e/dispu_e/cases_e/ds252_e.htm.
On 14 September 2007, China requested consultations with the United States on the preliminary anti-dumping and countervailing duty determinations made by the US Department of Commerce in respect of coated free sheet paper from China, DS 368. Consultations requested — no panel established nor settlement notified. See http://www.wto.org/english/tratop_e/dispu_e/cases_e/ds368_e.htm.
The newest one was requested on 19 September 2008 and concerns US trade defence measures on imports of steel pipes, tyres and woven sacks; see http://www.wto.org/english/tratop_e/dispu_e/cases_e/ds379_e.htm for the documents.
Accordingly, while it is not the first case brought by China with the establishment of a dispute settlement panel (and ultimately a decision), it seems to be the first in which China shows the determination to have a dispute settlement panel established.
Dr. Rainer Bierwagen
Posted by: Rainer BIERWAGEN | Jan 24, 2009 6:16:26 AM