Accueil > International Trade Regulation & Negociation

OAEA 2065 - International Trade & Data Regulation

Type d'enseignement : Seminar

Semester : Spring 2017-2018

Number of hours : 24

Language of tuition : English

Voir les plans de cours et bibliographies


No need to be a lawyer to follow this class as it will be based on case studies understandable by all students. Students with WTO legal knowledge might find part of this course redundant.

Course Description

This course has been labelled as a “PSIA pedagogically innovative course” (see below pedagogical format for further information). How international businesses and sovereign states interact to address problems that are inherently global in character (such as fight against protectionism, protection of data privacy, access to conflict minerals, tax evasion, climate change mitigation etc.) when there is no global international legal framework, or institution, to address these issues in a coherent manner? The seminar proposes to focus on concrete international issues and look on how businesses and sovereign states cooperate (or clash) in addressing them. We'll take the WTO and its jurisprudence as point of departure as this constitutes today the most advanced attempt to regulate international economic and business relations through a unique biding dispute settlement system. Based the examination of concrete business cases, we'll then consider to what extent states and business interact to address problems not covered by the WTO. The purpose of this class is that students master the basis of international business and trade law and have an educated personal opinion on these disciplines.


DELCROS, Fabian (International data flows and protection agreements negotiator, EU Commission)

Pedagogical format

This course has been labelled as a PSIA pedagogically-innovative course: - Applied case studies with a practitioner in the field. - Simulation final exercise to apply knowledge on world trade regulation and to practice negotiation skills and public speaking.

Course validation

Grading will be based on students' performance and behaviour during the class and the simulation exercise (to be organized at the end of the semester).


Students are expected to prepare for each session and do the compulsory readings that will be discussed during the class.

Required reading

  • Legal Problems of International Economic Relations, 5th ed. John Jackson, William Davey, Alan Sykes, West Group 2002, ISBN 978-0-314-16026-3
  • The Political Economy of the World Trading System, 3rd ed., Bernard M. Hoekman & Michel M. Kostecki

Additional required reading

Texts may be posted on the website

Plans de cours et bibliographies

Lecture 1: What is a trade policy & how companies approach relationship with governments?

  • Introduction 
  • Presentation of the simulation exercise

Lecture 2: US policy

  • Decision making process, tools, objectives of trade policies in the US
  • Case study: how a company can bring a trade dispute?

Lecture 3: EU trade policy

  • Decision making process, tools, objectives of trade policies in the EU.
  • Case study: Focus on the EU Trade for all strategy.

Lecture 4 The WTO, regulator (by default) of the globalization?

  • From GATT to WTO: Historical perspective, brief overview of the WTO institutional framework and decision making process
  • WTO dispute settlement process: how does it work, philosophy and practice. Deficiencies and possible improvement.
  • Focus: are trade sanctions efficient to enforce WTO rules?

Lecture 5: WTO fundamental principles (I): non-discrimination

  • Based on case studies, we will review the following principles:
  • National treatment principle: shall WTO Members treat imported goods the same way they treat domestic products?
  • Most favoured nation: shall WTO Members treat all imported goods similarly?

Lecture 6: WTO fundamental principles (II):

what is the room for manoeuvre that states have at the WTO. What is a non-tariff barrier? When can it be challenged before the WTO?

  • Based on case studies, we will review the following topics:
  • Tariffs: preferred trade protection.
  • Prohibition against quotas and measures restricting trade
  • When is a domestic measure challengeable before the WTO?
  • Focus: Are tariffs still adapted to protect economies at time of the global value chains?

Lecture 7: What room do WTO disciplines allow for environment policies?

  • GATT Art XX exception. Shrimp turtle case
  • Focus: how can we ensure that the WTO and international environmental protection agreements work together?

Lecture 8: WTO discipline and public health: how can WTO member restrict trade when faced with scientific uncertainty?

  • GATT ART XX, SPS and TBT agreements
  • Case studies: EU-Hormone case, US-cigarettes
  • Focus: should tobacco products be treated differently in trade agreements?

Lecture 9: Recent initiatives to manage the global supply chain:

  • Access & Trade in conflict minerals, extractive industry transparency initiatives. Labelling related issues. How do international standard setting organizations work and how do business contribute?

Lecture 10 : The regulation and protection of investment / investor to state disputes

Lecture 11 &  Lecture 12 : SIMULATION:

  • Hearing before the EU PLT; Negotiation & Press Conference; conclusion


Fabian delcros has an extensive experience practicing and teaching trade negotiations and resolving commercial disputes. He was successively lawyer for the EU in WTO disputes, EU negotiator in Geneva for WTO negotiations, head of the EU Delegation trade services in Brazil, General Electric EU Director for EU Government Affairs, international trade policy consultant for large multinationals and now negotiate international Data Protection and Data Transfer agreements with the European Commission. He created in 2000 the first trade law course at Sciences Po and also taught this class at the ENA and the European Commission.