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6 Participation – WTO Dispute Settlement

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Chapter Summary

In this chapter, primary data gathered and analysed evaluates the level of participation of African WTO Members in the dispute settlement system, as the most important pillar of the rules-based multilateral trading system. The level of African participation was analysed across the following indices: complainant participation; respondent participation; third-party participation; panellist participation; and appellate body member participation. The WTO dispute settlement system was the most important result from the Uruguay Round of multilateral trade negotiations. The concept that the WTO is about "the rule of law", with all Members governed by the trade laws, is anchored on the functioning of the dispute settlement system. In conception and design, in track record and jurisprudence, the dispute settlement system stands on terra firma, with its authority reinforced and enhanced, insulated from politics and controversy and, key to understanding and functioning in the rules-based system.

Keywords: African participation; appellate body member participation; complainant participation; Panellist Participation; respondent participation; rules-based multilateral trading system; third-party participation; WTO dispute settlement system



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