Consumer Information, Consumer Preferences and Product Labels under the TBT Agreement

Chapter in Michael J. Trebilcock and Tracey Epps (eds.), Research Handbook on the WTO and Technical Barriers to Trade (Edward Elgar Publishing, 2013)

U of Melbourne Legal Studies Research Paper No. 632

31 Pages Posted: 25 Nov 2012 Last revised: 21 Apr 2015

See all articles by Tania Voon

Tania Voon

University of Melbourne - Law School

Andrew D. Mitchell

University of Melbourne - Law School

Catherine Gascoigne

University of Melbourne - Law School

Date Written: November 24, 2012

Abstract

The Agreement on Technical Barriers to Trade ('TBT Agreement') of the World Trade Organization (WTO) regulates the requirements that WTO Members may impose on product labels and other 'technical regulations'. Requirements that discriminate against or between imported products are particularly problematic, while non-discriminatory requirements are more likely to be found consistent with the TBT Agreement. Three cases decided by the WTO Appellate Body in 2012 shed light on the meaning and application of Articles 2.1 and 2.2 of that agreement. A case study of product labelling for health reasons (tobacco, alcohol and nutrition) provides further context for understanding the significance of the TBT Agreement for Members' pursuit of non-trade objectives in connection with product labels.

Keywords: WTO, health, tobacco, alcohol, nutrition, food, label

JEL Classification: K33

Suggested Citation

Voon, Tania and Mitchell, Andrew D. and Gascoigne, Catherine, Consumer Information, Consumer Preferences and Product Labels under the TBT Agreement (November 24, 2012). Chapter in Michael J. Trebilcock and Tracey Epps (eds.), Research Handbook on the WTO and Technical Barriers to Trade (Edward Elgar Publishing, 2013); U of Melbourne Legal Studies Research Paper No. 632. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2180107

Tania Voon (Contact Author)

University of Melbourne - Law School ( email )

University Square
185 Pelham Street, Carlton
Victoria, Victoria 3010
Australia

Andrew D. Mitchell

University of Melbourne - Law School ( email )

University Square
185 Pelham Street, Carlton
Victoria, Victoria 3010
Australia
+61383441098 (Phone)
+61393472392 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.law.unimelb.edu.au/staff/Andrew%20Mitchell

Catherine Gascoigne

University of Melbourne - Law School ( email )

University Square
185 Pelham Street, Carlton
Melbourne, Victoria 3010
Australia

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