[WTO Case Review Series No.26] European Union – Measures Affecting Tariff Concessions on Certain Poultry Meat Products (WT/DS492): Characteristics of the WTO Panel's Interpretation of Articles XIII and XXVIII of the GATT

Author Name HIRAMI Kenta (The University of Tokyo)
Creation Date/NO. August 2019 19-P-014
Research Project Comprehensive Research on the Current International Trade/Investment System (pt. IV)
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China, which is expanding its export of poultry products in recent years, brought the claims concerning the European Union's (EU) modification of its tariff concessions on certain poultry products and the institution of the tariff rate quotas (TRQs) on these products. Since this WTO dispute is a rare case which concerns the interpretation of GATT Articles XXVIII and XIII, the panel grappled with various interpretative issues with no judicial precedent in the GATT/WTO and newly provided legal interpretations of these issues. The Panel rejected most claims made by China but found that the EU's allocation of the TRQs shares among supplying countries was inconsistent with the requirement of Article XIII:2. This finding provides China gains with an important foothold toward the expansion of poultry products export to the EU market. In implementing the panel's recommendations and rulings, however, it is expected that difficulties will arise, as there are other WTO Members which also have a supplying interest behind this dispute. Namely, the allocation of the TRQs made by the EU had been closely interrelated with the GATT Article XXVIII negotiations with Thailand and Brazil, which are major suppliers of poultry products. Therefore, if the EU reallocates the TRQs only in relation to China, new legal problems will arise in relation to Brazil and Thailand.