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GATS and the Social Regulation of Services. IES WORKING PAPER 3/2010

Herwig, Alexia (2010) GATS and the Social Regulation of Services. IES WORKING PAPER 3/2010. [Working Paper]

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    Many service transactions are highly complex, and their quality is difficult to ascertain for consumers. In order to have properly functioning service markets, the services thus often require regulation. However, with the advent of the WTO, international trade in services has become increasingly rule-bound. GATS has considerable, intricate effects on social regulation due to the characteristics of services. The allocation of regulatory jurisdiction between home and host country, for example, is rendered difficult by the process-based nature of a lot of services. The WTO US – Gambling dispute settlement report is the first to address GATS disciplines on social regulation in a detailed manner. This working paper submits that the US - Gambling report has increased interference with domestic social regulation and created regulatory uncertainty for WTO members. However, it is also argued that the real impact of the GATS on social regulation can only be understood by looking beyond the text of the GATS. GATS disciplines may become amplified through their interaction with domestic and other international law. The GATS also contains some “political” counterbalancing mechanisms that allow members to renegotiate their commitments. It is argued that these political mechanisms strengthen subsidiarity in the GATS, and make WTO dispute settlement bodies accountable to WTO members.

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    Item Type: Working Paper
    Subjects for non-EU documents: Other international institutions > GATT/WTO
    EU policies and themes > Policies & related activities > economic and financial affairs > Single Market > capital, goods, services, workers
    Subjects for EU documents: UNSPECIFIED
    EU Series and Periodicals: UNSPECIFIED
    EU Annual Reports: UNSPECIFIED
    Series: Series > Institute for European Studies (Brussels) > Working Papers
    Depositing User: Phil Wilkin
    Official EU Document: No
    Language: English
    Date Deposited: 07 Feb 2015 17:40
    Number of Pages: 40
    Last Modified: 07 Feb 2015 17:40

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