Tuesday, February 28, 2012
Yesterday, the Director General of the World Trade Organization (WTO), Pascal Lamy, reported the surprising news that antidumping actions have declined from 213 in 2008 to 153 in 2011. This decline is significant because in past recessions, governments have tended to take more protectionist measures to assist their domestic industries, resulting in increased complaints of unfair trade practices by foreign producers. Mr. Lamy also noted that although there was a surge in safeguard actions from 2008-2009, these actions have also declined since that time. On the other hand, the initiation of countervailing measures in response to subsidies has been increasing since 2005 (although they were still far fewer than antidumping actions). Overall, the total number of trade remedy actions remained relatively constant.