This course aims at providing students with the legal tools and the proper legal method to deal with sustainable development in global trade. The course follows an international law perspective and focuses on the analysis of the World Trade Organization (WTO) legal framework and its relationship with the conventional and customary rules establishing the foundations of sustainable development. To this aim, it provides a general overview of the legal discipline of international trade law - i.e. the economic relationships between States - pursuant to the international agreements covered by the WTO, with a special focus on the international regulation of trade of goods (the GATT, the SPS and the TBT agreements) and intellectual property (the TRIPs agreement). Specific attention is devoted to the analysis of the interaction between the WTO rules and the international legal provisions concerning sustainable development and other non-trade concerns, such as fundamental human rights and environmental protection, as developed by the WTO dispute settlement bodies trough their case law. The final part of the course is devoted to the legal analysis of the relationship existing between trade regulation and the protection of sustainable development pursuant to the most relevant regional and preferential trade agreements negotiated out of the WTO.
Learning outcomes By the end of this course, students should be able to:
· understand and evaluate critically the international trade legal issues and their relationship with sustainable development; · interpret the international trade legal provisions, taking account of the international legal framework on sustainable development; · understand and evaluate critically the jurisprudence developed by the WTO in this field and the law-making process, as currently evolving within and out of the WTO; · use their communication skills (written and oral) in this field, including arguing convincingly, with logical and legal thoroughness and propriety of legal language.
Part I: · Sustainable development as an objective of the WTO · Institutional issues Part II: · Sustainable development in trade of goods · The GATT (General Agreement on General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade) · the SPS Agreement (Agreement on Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures) · the TBT Agreement (Agreement on Technical Barriers to Trade) Part III: · Sustainable development issues in the TRIPS Agreement · TRIPs and biotechnology · TRIPs and the protection of biological diversity · TRIPs and access to pharmaceutical products Part IV: · Sustainable development between the WTO and the regional trade agreements Objectives - Analyzing international trade law and its relationship with the international framework on sustainable development; - Examining the main WTO covered agreements, in light of the connected most complex and current issues concerning sustainable development; - Analyzing the relationship between sustainable development and international trade law in light of the regional preferential agreements negotiated out of the WTO.
Class attendance is mandatory. A good command over international law is recommended. The detailed course programme will be provided at the beginning of the course. The programme and the didactic material will be available on-line (ARIEL). The course is structured on lectures, case-studies and mock trials. Students are called to examine the WTO jurisprudence and to participate to the mock trials before the WTO Panels and Appellate Body carried out in class. Assessment Students will be evaluated upon their active participation to the case-studies (20%) and the mock trials (30%) and the marks obtained in the final written test (50%).