Macquarie University
2 files

The participation of developing countries in the dispute settlement system of the WTO

posted on 2022-03-28, 23:16 authored by Saleh Adnan Al.Shraideh
International trade relations have become much more legalised under the World Trade Organization (WTO) than under the former international trade system created pursuant to the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT). The Dispute Settlement Understanding (DSU) of the WTO clearly represents a shift toward a rule-oriented, legalistic and adjudicative approach, which is intended to enhance that status of, and confidence in, the WTO dispute settlement system. The approach is likely to ensure greater stability and predictability in the system by encouraging precise decisions on the merits of disputes and discouraging infractions. Its greater binding effect serves as a powerful disincentive to those Members who have a propensity to favour unilateral measures to solve international trade disputes. This is particularly beneficial for developing countries that sought a system which recognises their disadvantaged position compared to the greater bargaining and retaliatory power of developed countries. However, despite the positive assessment of the WTO dispute settlement system, the functioning of the system is working against the interest of developing countries in having an efficient dispute settlement system that considers their needs and deals fairly with their disputes. This thesis examines the participation of developing countries in the dispute settlement system of the WTO, and argues that they are in a disadvantageous position compared to their developed counterparts. The system's failure to effectively address or efficiently deal with this position is an evidence of its bias against and deficiency towards developing countries' participation. The thesis focuses on the problematic issues developing countries face throughout their use of the system. It also considers the role that the DSU has played in addressing these issues and the efficiency of that role in restraining and limiting their effect on developing countries' participation in the system. The thesis analyses some ideas on the reform of the DSU that have been proposed through WTO negotiations or literature, and discusses their applicability on the current dispute settlement system. Finally, the thesis employs these proposals along with its discussion on the subject to introduce a reformed model of the DSU which is more sensitive to developing countries' concerns in the system in order to help providing an understanding of how such modifications could be carried out in future reforms on the DSU.


Table of Contents

1. Establishing the linkage: multilateral trade liberalisation, international dispute settlement, developing countries and special treatment -- 2. The dispute settlement system under GATT -- 3. The dispute settlement system of the WTO and the participation of developing countries -- 4. Implications of the DSU provisions on special and differential treatment for developing countries -- 5. Reforms in the WTO dispute settlement system -- 6. Conclusion and recommendations.


Bibliography: p. 324-353 Australian Digital Theses Program.

Awarding Institution

Macquarie University

Degree Type

Thesis PhD


Thesis (PhD) , Macquarie University, Faculty of Arts, Macquarie Law School

Department, Centre or School

Macquarie Law School

Year of Award


Principal Supervisor

Natalie Klein

Additional Supervisor 1

Rafiqul Islam


Copyright disclaimer: Copyright Saleh Al.Shraideh 2010




Developing countries


ix, 353 p

Former Identifiers

mq:18713 1562209