International Trade Law Task

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International Trade Law Task

Module Title: International trade law

Course title: International business

Assessment Title:

You are a trade official working for the (fictional) Government of Ruritania. It is a middle-income country with a population of 77 millions.  Ten percent of the people are nomadic farmers. They herd horses and cattle, and sell meat, milk, cheese and handicraft products.  They make their own leather which is used for many purposes. They have developed a strong export trade in leather products, particularly shoes, saddles and horse-gear. Much of the leather is famous for being dyed yellow, using the flowers of a local plant peculiar to Ruritania.

Over the past four years, there has been a steep increase in the volume of imports of cheap leather goods from Neverland (a fictional country). Ruritania’s nomadic farmers are complaining that they can no longer compete in the domestic market as their leather products are much more expensive than the imported Neverland products, and that their sales have fallen by 50% in just two years. They have held demonstrations in the capital, which has lead to violence. International Trade Law Task

Both Ruritania and Neverland joined the World Trade Organisation (WTO) in 1996.

In attempt to tackle these issues, the Ruritania government has put forward the following measures:

  1. A 50% antidumping duty is to be imposed on leather shoes and saddles imported from Neverland.
  2. To introduce a law requiring all imported leather products to be made only of leather which has been dyed in a particular shade of yellow. Testing for the correct shade will be done by the Dyestuffs Department at the Ruritania State Technical University. It is unlikely that if the law was passed that any Neverland leather products would pass the test.

Advise Ruritania Government on the legality of the above measures in light of the WTO Treaties and Case Law of the Dispute Settlement Body.


Instructions for completion and submission of written assignment

Submission of your assignment must be in accordance with the University regulations.

You should note the following:

  • This assessment is worth 70% of the marks for the module;
  • The maximum number of words permitted is 3000 words.  There is no permitted excess. Any part of your assignment which exceeds the word count for each part will not be marked;
  • The number of words must be declared on the Assignment Front Sheet and at the end of the submitted script.  The declaration may be checked against the electronic copy you submit on MyBeckett. A false declaration will be treated as an assessment offence according to University regulations;
  • You should only use footnotes for referencing. Footnotes which are only references are not included in the word count. Footnotes which are attempting to make points or explain the law are included in the word count.
  • Words included in the bibliography are not included in the word count;
  • You need not include cases or legislation in the bibliography provided they have been properly referenced in the text or footnotes;
  • Books, journals, reports, websites, and other sources should be referenced using the Harvard Style Referencing System.
  • The text of your assessment must be displayed using a 12-point (or larger) Arial or Verdana font and with a line spacing of at least 1.5.

Set out plan:

  • Intro
  • Main body
  • Conclusion

To note:

This assignment is a based around a problem type scenario the country and the problem is hypothetical.  

Apply the law to the facts. Do not invent facts that have been left out. Do not speculate. If there is ambiguity it is on purpose to allow you to talk about alternatives. If you don’t know all the relevant information say so and briefly talk about the alternatives.


Useful texts and websites:

  • The WTO legal texts link below (apply these throughout the assignment and overall conclusion on advising the Ruritania Government) finding all legal texts of relevant agreements- GATT, GATS, TRIPS, SPS, TBT, etc

  • Crowne on Fishing TRIPS A Look at the History of the Agreement on Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property2011
  • Trebilcock, Howse and Eliason, the regulation of international trade 4th, Routledge, 2012
  • Hoekman, B., world trade organisation: law, economics, and politics, Routledge, 2016.
  • Kennedy, M., WTO dispute settlement and the TRIPS agreement: applying intellectual property standards in a trade law framework, Cambridge University press,
  • Vranes, E., Trade and environment: fundamental issues in international law, WTO law and legal theory, OUP, 2009
  • Cass, D., The constitutionalization of the world trade organisation: legitimacy, democracy and community in the international trading system, OUP, 2005

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