GoJIL Vol. 2, No. 2 (2010)
New Protectionism – How Binding are International Economic Legal Obligations During a Global Economic Crisis?
Stephan Hobe & Jörn Griebel
The global financial crisis has not only instigated states to enact a wide range of protectionist measures, by which they seek to protect their economic interests, but it also forms the background against which possible justifications regarding protectionist measured have to be discussed and measured. The present article examines recent examples of protectionist measures and discusses, to what extent such measures may be justified by rules stemming from the WTO legal regime or international investment law in general. The authors focus on the concept of "economic necessity", which is enshrined in Art. 25 of the ILC Articles on State Responsibility and which has taken on even greater importance due to the Argentina investement law cases. They furthermore explore, whether this concept has been recognized by the WTO legal regime and/or bilateral investment treaties (BITs) and what criteria would have to be met so that a state could successfully rely on necessity to justify its actions in times of an economic crisis.
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