Gov'ts Influence on Trade_WTO Doha Round

Gatt items that must be re examined as a result

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Gatt items that must be re-examined, as a result, include exceptions for national security, dual-pricing policies for supplying energy to local industries below international prices, subsidies for local producers whose lower-priced exports disadvantage producers in the importing country, and general exceptions for national measures to protect health and the environment. The rules must also be re-examined in light of obligations under the Kyoto Protocol or a successor agreement. Already a number of areas of conflict have been identified: taxes for green production processes; eco-labelling that in- hibits trade in certain goods; and border tax adjustments, which are tax refunds or tax exemptions by exporting coun- tries on environmental inputs. International trading of carbon credits is another domain that requires further study to see whether WTO rules or Gatt disciplines could prove useful in designing a global carbon market. Application of these rules is further hampered by the fuzzy legal status of a carbon credit, whether it is a good, a service or a hybrid financial instrument not subject to WTO rules. Biofuels are taking on greater importance yet uncertainties abound on how to apply trade rules and environ- mental standards. Global ethanol production has doubled in just five years to more than 40bn litres in 2005, and interna- tional ethanol trade has taken off. More research is needed into potential areas of conflict to make sure biofuels trade is not hamstrung by illegal im-
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