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WTO Working Papers

WTO working papers usually represent research in progress. Such research may be conducted in the preparation of WTO Secretariat reports, studies or other material for WTO members. The papers are circulated for comment because the WTO considers critical review of professional research to be extremely important.

English

Export Policies and the General Agreement on Trade in Services

Compared to its counterpart in merchandise trade, the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) of 1947, the General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS) contains a variety of conceptual innovations. In addition to cross-border supply, the Agreement covers three additional types of transactions, i.e. the supply of services via consumer movements abroad as well as the presence of foreign firms and foreign service professionals in the respective markets. At the same time, the GATS accommodates a range of measures, including the use of quantitative restrictions and discriminatory taxes or subsidies, which are clearly constrained under the GATT. The Agreement offers particularly broad scope for various types of export-related interventions, regardless of ensuing market distortions. The social and economic relevance of such measures is immediately evident. This paper seeks to provide an overview and assessment in the light of relevant GATS provisions and WTO dispute rulings.

English

Keywords: GATS, trade in services, export policies
JEL: F53: International Economics / International Relations, National Security, and International Political Economy / International Agreements and Observance; International Organizations; F13: International Economics / Trade / Trade Policy; International Trade Organizations
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