An Analysis of the WORLD TRADE ORGANIZATION’S (WTO) Dispute Resolution Mechanism over the US/EU food dispute

The WTO’s Dispute Resolution Mechanism is a highly secretive decision making body, which decides who among the participants win or loses in the international trade wars. The United States is threatening to file a formal complaint against the European Union over GM foods. These are foods have been genetically manipulated to contain more than one organism.

Since the WTO’s Dispute Resolution Mechanism is very secretive, it creates a bias and prevents other countries from participating. Moreover, the rules and principles of the WTO is also bias against the European Union’s precautionary approach to GM foods. They may help resolve the disputes but not in the most fair, transparent and democratic way. It would be wiser to get rid of the veil of secrecy in order to expose the real score on the mechanism itself and how the WTO really works, including the process it undertakes in settling any disputes especially the issue on the GM food. Clearly, there is a violation of transparency because they are highly secretive and influenced by big business that controls the GM trade.

The system is not working adequately in meeting the needs of those participants seeking for justice. I believe that the WTO should not control the food and agriculture but they must support the domestic consumer. We need a leader who could vigorously defend our cause and who could continue our call for fundamental change towards the process our world trade is organized.


Friends of the Earth (2003, February). Briefing GM Trade War Looms: How will the World Trade Organization handle the US/EU food dispute. Retrieved October 12, 2002 from