EU Violating WTO Rules on Solar Panels, Says China

Guardian reports on a brand new WTO case where China asserts that the EU is in violation of international trade rules regarding solar panels.

They say that rules requiring local content for feed-in tariffs in Italia and Greece are in violation of WTO rules against discrimination.

I agree. Local content rules are a quite clear violation of Article 3 GATT. The panel decision stating this in the case against Canada will be published shortly.


Published by kflenz

Professor at Aoyama Gakuin University, Tokyo. Author of Lenz Blog (since 2003,

3 thoughts on “EU Violating WTO Rules on Solar Panels, Says China

  1. Personally, I think enforcement of WTO rules should be predicated on the country making the complaint being a good law abiding international citizen. China for example should be required to honor the UN’s Universal Declaration of Human Rights before it can use the WTO rules.


  2. That’s not how the system works right now. And if such counterclaims were permitted, it would be very difficult for anyone to have standing. The dispute resolution of the WTO would cease to function.

    The WTO system of dispute resolution is far from perfect, but it beats deciding economic conflicts by military power. And it may be the most effective enforcement mechanism of all areas of public international law.

    There is something like your proposal in the EU GSP (General System of Preferences) rules. If Mongolia wants to get zero tariff access to the EU market, they need to honor international human rights, labor, and environmental standards.


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