Safeguard Measures in World Trade
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Safeguard Measures in World Trade

The Legal Analysis, Third Edition

Yong-Shik Lee

Safeguard Measures in World Trade tackles the controversial issue of restrictions on imports. Professor Yong-Shik Lee skillfully argues that Safeguards interfere substantially with the normal stream of trade, and their improper application undermines the objectives of the World Trade Organization (WTO).
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Chapter 11: Other emergency import restrictions in the WTO

Yong-Shik Lee


The GATT/WTO system also provides emergency import restrictions other than the general safeguard provided under the SA. Those measures share certain common features with SGs: they also allow Members to apply unilateral import restrictions of a non-permanent nature, and they are also distinguished from the other measures of administered protection, namely countervailing measures and anti-dumping actions, in that they do not require any unfair trade practice on the part of exporters, such as dumping or subsidization. Those other import restrictions are provided under Article XII, XVIII, the Understanding on Balance of Payments of the GATT 1994, the GATS, and the Agreement on Agriculture. The Agreement on Textiles and Clothing, which expired on January 1, 2005, had also provided transitional safeguard measures which are no longer applicable. TSGs applied to the textile and clothing products that were listed under the ATC and had not been integrated into the GATT 1994. There are distinctions between those measures and SGs: while SGs apply to any product integrated into the GATT 1994, the other measures apply to a limited range of products covered by the specific agreements or their objective is to meet more general economic needs of the importing Members, such as securing a balance of payments, rather than protecting a specific domestic industry. TSGs formerly provided under the ATC and special safeguard measures under the Agreement on Agriculture fall under the former category, and import restrictive measures to improve the balance-of-payments belong to the latter.

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