Brexit and Trade Defence: Effects of a Changed Territory

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After the UK's withdrawal from the European Union (EU), the EU's trade defence measures no longer applied to the territory of the UK. This means that the UK now applies its own trade defence measures and has transitioned some of the EU's trade defence measures. The EU applies its trade defence measures to the reduced territory of the EU27, while third parties that had imposed trade defence measures against the EU now apply them against the EU27 and the UK. This article analyses the compatibility of these changed measures with WTO law. It argues first that in principle WTO law allows changes in the territorial scope of trade defence measures if the investigation and imposition of the measures remain attributable to the imposing WTO Member. This defends the EU's and the UK's approaches. Second, changed circumstances' reviews or adaptations of the measures by the EU or the UK may be necessary. However, this happens rarely and only if specific evidence is provided. Third, subject to review or adaptations where warranted, third countries can apply their measures targeting the EU against the EU27 and the UK.




Bickel, F. (2021, March 1). Brexit and Trade Defence: Effects of a Changed Territory. Journal of International Economic Law. Oxford University Press.

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