The WTO, the Internet and Trade in Digital Products: EC-US Perspectives (Studies in International Trade Law)

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ISBN-13: 978-1841135731
ISBN-10: 1841135739
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Editorial Reviews


The work is timely because, as the author recognizes, this new area of international trade is lightly and incompletely regulated...the author has done exactly what he set out to do, firmly cementing himself as a leading commentator on trade in digital products and this book as compulsory reading for anyone hoping to understand the field. Andrew Mitchell Global Law Books May 2007 .it deserves attention not only from the academic world, but also from both policy makers and business community.this book merits being on the bookshelf of anyone interested in this far important and interesting topic. The author has filled in a gap in academic literature with a substantive analysis of the requirements that must be addressed in the relevant ongoing multilateral trade talks to achieve a fully liberal trade flow of digitally delivered content products. Katia Bodard SCRIPT-ed April 2007 .the WTO rules do not yet provide a clear legal framework for international trade in digitally-delivered content products. Wunsch-Vincent's book provides a well-written, thorough and lucid analysis of the challenges the WTO faces with regard to these products. Marco Slotboom Common Market Law Review, Vol 44, Issue 1 2007 The author exposes the complex range of politics and cultural issues that lurk under the surface.The text provides an exceptional level of detail that clearly demonstrates the issues facing the WTO today. Stephen Mason Society for Computers & Law 2006 ... this is a very convincing, very thorough, and very pessimistic analysis of why one of the most promising areas of international trade. remains on uncharted waters..a must read for all practitioners, analysts, and researchers interested in multilateral trade negotiations. It will also be a valuable source of reflection for anyone trying to understand and anticipate how deeply international relations are and will be affected by the information revolution. Bruno Lanvin Journal of International Economic Law Volume 9, no. 3, September 2006 ...thorough, balanced, and unique examination of the international trade policy framework governing the exchange of 'digitally-delivered content products'... Judson O. Berkley Journal of World Trade February 2006 ...clearly a highly important contribution and will become compulsory reading for anybody interested in this subject area - academics, policy practitioners and members of the business community alike. Martin Gedult v. Jungenfeld Swiss Trade Newsletter February 2006

About the Author

Sacha Wunsch-Vincent is Economist at the Information, Computer and Communications Policy Division of the OECD and Visiting Fellow of the Institute for International Economics. He teaches international trade at Sciences Po (Paris).

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Product Details

  • Series: Studies in International Trade Law (Book 3)
  • Hardcover: 295 pages
  • Publisher: Hart Publishing (January 15, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1841135739
  • ISBN-13: 978-1841135731
  • Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 0.8 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #550,793 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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By Prof.Economics on April 2, 2006
Format: Hardcover

Due to fast-paced technological changes - most notably the rapid development of the Internet - cross-border electronic trade in digital content products (movies, music, software, etc.) has become an increasingly important phenomenon. However, such trade is not explicitly recognised within the current WTO-framework.

In this book, SACHA WUNSCH-VINCENT - an economist at the OECD - provides the first detailed and comprehensive analysis of the steps WTO Members must undertake if they want to remedy this state of affairs - thereby reducing the serious risk of rising discriminatory barriers to digital trade. First the author elaborates on the WTO's work relating to digitally-delivered content products and on the various measures required in the Doha Negotiations to guarantee market access for this category of products. Secondly, he discusses the factors that impede reaching a consensus between the principal players in the negotiations (i.e. the EC and the US) - which is a crucial condition for progress in this area. Thirdly, WUNSCH-VINCENT compares how the multilateral Doha Negotiations and the parallel (US-driven) bilateral and regional trade agreements have - to date - contributed to securing a liberal digital trade regime.

A central conclusion of the book is that only very few of the identified negotiation requirements have been satisfactorily met at the multilateral level. It is demonstrated that the coverage of digital content products by WTO rules remains at best uncertain and that free trade in digital content has not yet been secured. Moreover, although some modest progress could be achieved in the framework of US preferential free trade agreements, the latter are unlikely to be able to lock in free trade for digital content.
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