WTO Law and Practice

The international experience of our firm includes WTO law and practice, notably in the area of customs, trade defence and relevant litigation before investigating authorities and the WTO's Dispute Settlement Body.

The WTO is the result of the closure of the GATT's Uruguay Round in 1994. All EU Member States are collectively a member of the WTO, and all EU Member States have ceded all rights of access to the WTO to the European Commission as their representative. Under the obligations resulting out of the WTO system, most of the aspects of the EU's Common Commercial Policy must comply with the WTO provisions and case law.

The WTO provisions include several agreements concerning trade in goods and services, which, among others, implement the provisions of the GATT agreement in more detail. The key WTO principles are as follows:

Failure to observe the above principles by any WTO member may result in contentious proceedings before the WTO's Dispute Settlement Body ("DSB"). Some of our lawyers have pursued graduate studies and have obtained extensive experience in advising corporate entities and sovereign governments on the application of WTO provisions, including accession negotiations and the application of trade defense rules (anti-dumping, anti-subsidy and safeguards). Especially in the area of trade defense, businesses may draw great advantages from either having duties imposed on competitive goods imported in the EU or being properly represented in anti-dumping and other trade defense proceedings initiated by other jurisdictions outside the EU (third countries). For example, Greek exporters of goods may be faced with such investigations by any WTO member in the world. Should this happen, it is crucial to co-operate in full and attempt to minimize the level of duties to be imposed or even completely eliminate the risk. Sarantitis Law Firm is the best-placed firm in Greece to provide this type of advice and representation. Our lawyers have a collective experience of over 50 trade defense investigations during the last decade, through their experience gained in Brussels and other jurisdictions, worldwide.