LANDMARK RULING ON THE WTO NATIONAL SECURITY EXCEPTION

In a landmark decision concerning Ukraine’s complaint against Russia’s transit restrictions, a WTO Panel has ruled for the first time on the nature of the GATT national security exception. The Panel took the view that the invocation of the exception is justiciable and subject to scrutiny by the WTO Dispute Settlement Body (DSB). This is contrary to the position … Read more

Brexit Blog launches with Brexit Q&A

As formal Brexit negotiations have now started, Herbert Smith Freehills is pleased to announce the launch of its new Brexit Notes blog, where you will find articles and updates on the latest Brexit developments.   As well as reporting on new developments going forward, Brexit Notes has been pre-populated with a selection of articles and … Read more

Trade Post-Brexit: What would a hard Brexit mean for international trade?

The UK’s vote to leave the EU brings with it the possibility of so-called 'hard Brexit'. Business needs to understand what Britain leaving the EU without a smooth transition to a new framework might mean for cross-border trade both within Europe and between Europe and the rest of the world. At the point when the … Read more

EU trade agreement enters into effect with five southern African countries

On 10 June 2016 the EU signed an Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) with the Southern Africa Development Community EPA Group comprising Botswana, Lesotho, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa and Swaziland (the SADC EPA). On 10 October 2016 that agreement entered into effect between the EU and five of those countries: with Mozambique in the process of … Read more

Signature of the Tripartite Free Trade Agreement (TFTA) on 10 June 2015: the first step towards a united African free trade bloc?

On 10 June 2015 the TFTA was signed in Cairo, uniting three of Africa’s principal trading blocs: the Southern African Development Community (SADC), the East African Community (EAC) and the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA). The TFTA consists of a US$1.2 trillion free trade area, incorporating 26 African nations,[1] a population of … Read more

China-Australia Free Trade Agreement signed

Australian Trade Minister Andrew Robb and Chinese Commerce Minister Gao Hucheng today signed the China-Australia Free Trade Agreement (ChAFTA) in Canberra, following the signing of a Declaration of Intent in November 2014 during Chinese President Xi Jinping’s visit to Australia (see our articles: Australia and China conclude free trade agreement and Australia China FTA to be concluded … Read more

TTIP: EU Commission publishes statistical report on responses to the public consultation on ISDS and investment protection

On 18 July, the EU Commission published its Preliminary Report (statistical overview) on the responses to its consultation on investment protection and ISDS in the TTIP (for discussion of the consultation, see our previous blog post). The Preliminary Report demonstrates that there was considerable interest in the consultation, with a total of 149,399 online replies. … Read more