Monday, February 10, 2014

India and dispute settlement

A regular follower of Trade Law and Development Journal, here is the latest issue on India and the international economic system. 

A piece on India's engagement with the WTO dispute settlement system by James Nedumpara caught my attention. Highlighting India's experience with the dispute settlement system so far, its engagement with challenges faced thereof, the author does conclude that India would have to sustain the capacity already built:
"India’s challenge in the future will be to sustain the capacity already built. Trade disputes are cyclical and it may require positive intervention on the part of the government to foster and nourish trade-related capacity. This article has highlighted the need to establish better channels of communication between the government and industry. Furthermore, a bottom-up approach to stakeholder participation will be feasible only if the government encourages private sector and educational institutions to take greater interest in international trade issues. A large number of trade-related governmental institutions and adjudicatory bodies in India are yet to achieve a desired level of sophistication in WTO matters. Equipping these agencies with the necessary understanding of WTO matters will be crucial for India’s chances of playing a leading role in WTO dispute settlement." 
The WTO dispute process involves the State as the primary actor. However, the interests are largely those of private businesses and sectors, both small and large. To find that partnership model of India's State capacity, legal brilliance and private sector participation will decide the success of India at the WTO dispute settlement process.

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