Chinese Law Prof Blog

Editor: Donald C. Clarke
George Washington University Law School

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Trade law humor

International trade law is not normally considered a major generator of yuks, but I thought I might pass on this interesting juxtaposition of two articles about China’s appeal of its WTO loss on the issue of export controls. The first one, from Bloomberg, is entitled "China to Appeal WTO Ruling on Raw Material Export Controls", and states (accurately), “A WTO panel said on July 5 that duties and quotas on the export of raw materials violate global trade rules and gave domestic companies an edge.” The article also summarizes (accurately) the positions of the parties as follows: “China said the restrictions are necessary to conserve exhaustible natural resources and ease overproduction and emissions of carbon and sulfur gases from furnaces. The U.S., the EU and Mexico said the curbs discourage the export of materials that are critical for their manufacturers, while keeping them cheaper and readily available in China.”

Apparently the China Daily (a quasi-official PRC paper) did not get the memo. Its recent article reporting on the appeal said, in the very first sentence, “[Chinese] [e]xperts welcomed China's appeal of a ruling by the World Trade Organization (WTO) claiming that the nation imposed restrictions on exports of nine raw materials, saying the move helps protect local industry.” (Emphasis added.) 


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