WTO Law in the Canadian Legal Order
in Claudio DORDI (edited), THE ABSENCE OF DIRECT EFFECT OF WTO IN THE EC AND IN OTHER COUNTRIES, The Interuniversity Centre on the Law of International Economic Organizations (CIDOIE), Giappicchelli Editore, Turin 2010, pp. 323-330. ISBN 978-88-348-9623-5
12 Pages Posted: 10 Oct 2013
Date Written: 2010
1. The Effects of International Law in the Canadian Legal Order:
Canada is a country which only recently began to deal with the issue of implementation of international law within its legal system. In particular, its recent birth on the international scene, with an Act of the Imperial Parliament in London, currently called the “Constitution Act, 1867” and once the “British North America Act”, has entailed a certain difficulty to accept a prompt and straightforward implementation of international obligations.
Moreover, this lack of a particularly openness to international law and to its perspectives of domestic implementation, what German courts call Völkerrechtsfreundlichkeit, was also due to the federal nature of Canada, a State deeply worried of maintaining the whole unity of the country among all its different constitutive elements.
This rather sceptical behaviour towards the domestic effects of international law in the Canadian legal order was witnessed by the attitude of early judicial authorities, which limited their attention on international law just to “taking notice” of it.
Consequently, as far as the reception of international law is concerned, in Canada there was always a strong concern for the national unity and for the need to stay autonomous and independent on the international scene. In a word Canadian courts and Parliament share an attention to what has been called by Van Ert the attention to “self-government”, a sensation, in any case, much more felt by the legislative power than the judicial authorities. This concern entails a dualistic system of reception as to international treaties, even though Canadian dualism stems also from the British legal tradition of the country.
Keywords: WTO, Canada, International Law, Direct Effect
JEL Classification: F02, K33, K39
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation