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date: 23 October 2020

Abstract and Keywords

The World Trade Organization (WTO) dispute settlement system has generally been viewed as a success. This article discuses the question of whether the system is appropriately constrained given the context in which it operates. The article examines various issues. Firstly, the right mix of judicial and non-judicial approaches to dispute settlement by the WTO. Secondly, the way the system resolves disputes over ambiguous treaty language. It proceeds further with a discussion of handling controversial cases that involve issues of great importance to sovereign States. Finally, it deals with the proper functioning of the WTO with an activist dispute settlement system and a weak norm-setting mechanism. This article concludes that the WTO dispute settlement system has an effective mix of judicial and non-judicial approaches to dispute settlement and is able to handle controversial cases.

Keywords: dispute settlement system, judicial, treaty language, norm-setting mechanism, non-judicial approaches

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