China's Entry into the WTO--A Mistake for the United States?

21 Pages Posted: 29 Apr 2022

Date Written: April 21, 2022


The conclusion that China's accession to the WTO was a failure from a U.S. perspective stems from: 1) loading too many issues and expectations—including an entire panoply of national security and geostrategic concerns -- on to the WTO and its rules-based, binding dispute settlement system to address; 2) failure by the United States and the rest of the world to use the tools available as a result of China’s accession to the WTO to both protect their domestic markets and hold China to account for its WTO commitments; and 3) China’s U-turn away from market-economy reforms to a much more state-centric, Chinese Communist Party (CCP)-run economy. Addressing the United States’ concerns with China will require working to strengthen the WTO and then using it to take on a more limited set of trade concerns while using other tools to address broader concerns both bilaterally and in conjunction with allies and partners.

Keywords: China, WTO, trade

JEL Classification: J,K, L

Suggested Citation

Hillman, Jennifer, China's Entry into the WTO--A Mistake for the United States? (April 21, 2022). Available at SSRN: or

Jennifer Hillman (Contact Author)

Georgetown University Law Center ( email )

600 New Jersey Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20001
United States

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