WTO rule-making: WTO Accession Protocols and jurisprudence

This chapter examines rule-making in the WTO. It explains the legal provisions governing how rules are made in the WTO, and describes WTO rule-making in practice, including through the adoption of decisions by the Ministerial Conference and the General Council and by way of dispute settlement. The role of consensus and voting in WTO rulemaking are discussed. The chapter also refers to different types of rules and decisions – such as ministerial declarations, authoritative interpretations, amendments and waivers – and considers their legal value and effect, as well as how different types of rules or decisions have been interpreted or applied. Finally, it also includes a look at rule-making in the context of accessions, and considers Accession Protocols and working party reports through the lens of WTO dispute settlement.

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