Fragmentation or interaction: the WTO, fisheries subsidies, and international law
AuthorYoung, Margaret A.
Source TitleWorld Trade Review
PublisherCambridge University Press
University of Melbourne Author/sYoung, Margaret
AffiliationMelbourne Law School
Document TypeJournal Article
CitationsYoung, M. A. (2009). Fragmentation or interaction: the WTO, fisheries subsidies, and international law. World Trade Review, 8(4), 477-515.
Access StatusOpen Access
© 2009 Margaret A. Young. Online edition of the journal is available at http://journals.cambridge.org/action/displayJournal?jid=WTR
Subsidies to the fishing sector have trade and ecological consequences, especially for fisheries that are over-exploited. In response, WTO members are negotiating to clarify and improve the Agreement on Subsidies and Countervailing Measures. Yet significant legal challenges constrain this ongoing effort because fisheries conservation and management matters are often addressed by the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, instruments of the Food and Agriculture Organization, and other legal regimes to which some WTO members have not consented. This article analyses modes of learning and information exchange within the WTO regime, and compares the proposed use of standards, benchmarks, and peer review in the draft fisheries subsidies rules with existing arrangements between the WTO and organizations such as the OECD and product standard-setting bodies. It argues that novel deliberative strategies of regime interaction are more important in resolving the challenges posed by international law’s fragmentation than adherence to strict mandates or legal hierarchies.
KeywordsWTO; fishing subsidies; international law
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