The China-Taiwan ECFA, Geopolitical Dimensions and WTO Law
Journal of International Economic Law, Vol. 14, No. 1, pp. 121-156, 2011
36 Pages Posted: 21 Feb 2011 Last revised: 10 Oct 2012
Date Written: February 17, 2011
This article examines legal and geopolitical aspects of the China-Taiwan Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA). It begins by analyzing areas in which the two governments’ measures contravene rules of the World Trade Organization (WTO). In particular, it provides the first detailed examination of the significant implications emerging from the ECFA for cross-straits trade relations and East Asian regionalism. The article also explains how the ECFA was modeled on free trade agreements (FTAs) of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations and assesses the impact of the ECFA’s early harvest program. Finally, the article discusses the ECFA’s consistency with WTO requirements for an interim FTA agreement and potential legal issues arising from the dispute settlement mechanism. In this respect, the article presents a valuable case study of an FTA.
Keywords: China, Taiwan, Framework Agreement, ECFA, CEPA, FTA, WTO, ASEAN, Asian Regionalism, Korea, Singapore
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