» Corporate Power

» Jobs, Wages and Economic Outcomes

» Food Safety

» Access to Affordable Medicines

» Corporate-rigged “Trade” Pacts

» Alternatives to Corporate Globalization

» Other Issues

Trade Data Center

One-stop shop for searchable trade databases, case lists & more

Eyes on Trade

Global Trade Watch blog on trade & globalization. Subscribe to RSS.

Debunking Trade Myths

To hide the facts about failed trade policies, proponents are changing the data

Connect with GTW

What's New – Global Trade Watch

  • March 14: On Unhappy Fifth Anniversary of U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement, Deficit With Korea Has Doubled as U.S. Exports Fell, Imports Soared
  • February 28: Bait & Switch: Trump Trade Plans to “Bring American Jobs Back” as Promised in Campaign Notably MIA in Speech.

View 'What's New' Archives

Domestic Regulation Negotiations
In the context of World Trade Organization (WTO) General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS) negotiations now underway, the WTO's "Working Party on Domestic Regulations" has produced a draft set of "disciplines" that would limit domestic regulation of all service sectors – from energy to health care to higher education to banking and more – not just specific service sectors countries chose to sign up to meet the other GATS rules. These new draft disciplines would allow challenge before WTO tribunals of nondiscriminatory domestic regulations – rules that treat domestic and foreign companies the same – including those that govern licenses and qualifications, as well as technical service standards.

The draft would allow challenges on numerous grounds, including reasonableness, relevance, transparency/necessity and lack of conformity with international standards. A panel of three trade lawyers at the WTO in Geneva would be empowered to judge if federal or state and local laws met these very subjective tests, without reference to any U.S. jurisprudence on the meaning of such terms, and if they ruled against domestic laws, the laws must be changed or eliminated or the U.S would face trade sanctions.

Related Documents

Copyright © 2017 Public Citizen. Some rights reserved. Non-commercial use of text and images in which Public Citizen holds the copyright is permitted, with attribution, under the terms and conditions of a Creative Commons License. This Web site is shared by Public Citizen Inc. and Public Citizen Foundation. Learn More about the distinction between these two components of Public Citizen.

Public Citizen, Inc. and Public Citizen Foundation


You can support the fight for greater government and corporate accountability through a donation to either Public Citizen, Inc., or Public Citizen Foundation, Inc.

Public Citizen lobbies Congress and federal agencies to advance Public Citizen’s mission of advancing government and corporate accountability. When you make a contribution to Public Citizen, you become a member of Public Citizen, showing your support and entitling you to benefits such as Public Citizen News. Contributions to Public Citizen are not tax-deductible.

Public Citizen Foundation focuses on research, public education, and litigation in support of our mission. By law, the Foundation can engage in only very limited lobbying. Contributions to Public Citizen Foundation are tax-deductible.