The Integration of Human Rights in Bilateral and Plurilateral Free Trade Agreements: Arguments for a Coherent Relationship with Reference to the Swiss Context

21 Currents: International Trade Law Journal 2 (2013)

18 Pages Posted: 6 Oct 2013 Last revised: 8 Dec 2013

See all articles by Ioana Cismas

Ioana Cismas

University of York - York Law School

Date Written: October 4, 2013

Abstract

In recent years, the locus of trade appears to have shifted from the multilateral stage to the bilateral and plurilateral levels. This article focuses on the integration of human rights in bilateral and plurilateral free trade agreements as a complementary strategy to achieving a coherent international law. It draws on Switzerland as a case study, in reference to its bilateral trade relations and as part of the European Free Trade Association (EFTA). The study puts forward a mix of arguments supporting the integration of human rights in Swiss free trade agreements: international law impetuses stemming from the need to preserve a coherent international legal system and uphold the human rights obligations of all trade partners, Switzerland’s pledge to ensure coherence of its policies, and economic arguments purporting to strengthen economic integration and to reduce the costs for business.

Keywords: free trade agreements, international law, human rights, coherence, fragmentation, EFTA, FTA, Switzerland

Suggested Citation

Cismas, Ioana, The Integration of Human Rights in Bilateral and Plurilateral Free Trade Agreements: Arguments for a Coherent Relationship with Reference to the Swiss Context (October 4, 2013). 21 Currents: International Trade Law Journal 2 (2013). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2336062

Ioana Cismas (Contact Author)

University of York - York Law School ( email )

University of York
Heslington, York YO10
United Kingdom

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