U.S. Chamber Statement on Impasse at World Trade Organization

Tuesday, December 10, 2019 - 2:00pm

WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Chamber Executive Vice President and Head of International Affairs Myron Brilliant issued the following statement on the impasse that will cause the Appellate Body of the World Trade Organization (WTO) to cease to function this week:

“Despite a number of challenges, the WTO and the global rules-based trading system it embodies are successful institutions that benefit the entire world. The increase in trade from the WTO agreements has raised living standards, boosted innovation, and stimulated economic growth in the U.S. and around the globe.

The Trump Administration, like its predecessors, has called attention to problems with the functioning of the WTO’s Appellate Body, which plays a key role in trade disputes. These are serious issues. However, the shuttering of the Appellate Body caused by the block placed on the appointment of new members does not serve the interests of the U.S. business community.

“The Chamber urges all parties to redouble their efforts to address the important issues the U.S. has raised regarding the functioning of the Appellate Body. The goal must be to revive it in a more responsive and focused form in keeping with the objectives established by the U.S. and other members when the WTO was created nearly three decades ago.

“If the WTO didn’t exist, we’d have to create it. Its rules protect U.S. firms from unfair treatment and hidden protectionism every day. Safeguarding this institution and its dispute settlement system should be an urgent national and international priority.”