Monday, July 16, 2012
Earlier today, the World Trade Organization (WTO) dispute resolution panel issued its report in China - Certain Measures Affecting Electronic Payment Services (DS413). The United States initiated the proceedings in September 2010 when it alleged, inter alia, that China permits only a Chinese entity (China UnionPay) to supply electronic payment services for payment card transactions denominated and paid in renminbi in China. Service suppliers from other Member States can only supply these services for payment card transactions paid in foreign currency. In its report, the WTO panel determined that at least part of the electronic payment services at issue were covered by China's market access commitments under the General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS) and that China had violated its obligations under Article XVI of GATS by granting one company a monopoly on clearing certain credit card transactions. However, the panel also rejected some of the United States' other allegations. More information and the full opinion may be found on the WTO website.