Module Information

Module Identifier
Module Title
International Trade Law
Academic Year
Semester 1
Other Staff

Course Delivery

Delivery Type Delivery length / details
Seminar 11 x 2 Hour Seminars


Assessment Type Assessment length / details Proportion
Semester Assessment WRITTEN ASSIGNMENT  (6,000 WORDS)  80%
Semester Assessment ORAL PRESENTATION  20%
Supplementary Assessment WRITTEN ASSIGNMENT  (6,000 WORDS TO BE SUBMITTED, IF FAILED)  80%

Learning Outcomes

On completion of this module, students should be able to:
1. Demonstrate an understanding of the rationale and drivers behind the WTO and its regulatory framework as well as its impact on global governance and geo-politics of world trade
2. Demonstrate an awareness of the concepts, rules and instrumentalities for WTO standard setting and adjudication
3. Demonstrate an ability to critically evaluate GATT and the core legal concepts that frame it and the commercial and political interests and tensions that drive them
4. Demonstrate an awareness of the specific WTO regulation as applicable to particular sectors (agricultural products), commercial practices (dumping) or legal fields (IP law)
5. Demonstrate a critical awareness of the wider push for global trade liberalization within which the WTO operates
6. Demonstrate an understanding of the interaction between domestic law and international trade law

Brief description

This module provides insight into the WTO, one of the most powerful standard setting and adjudicating bodies of the 21st century. It examines the history, objectives and institutional design of the WTO and the legal concepts and instruments it uses to promote global trade through dismantling trade barriers, particularly in relation to goods. Using case studies, such the trade in agricultural products, this module critically explores the rationale behind the WTO framework and tensions to which it has given rise and how competing interests have been resolved or could be resolved. It highlights the intersection between international trade law and development, human rights and environmental protection and other social, economic and cultural agendas.


This module consists of 10 units, covering the following topics:
1. From GATT 1947 to the World Trade Organization – its history, objective and institutional design
2. WTO dispute settlement : basic principles, panel proceedings, appellate reviews and ‘enforcement’
3. Basic principles of trade in goods (GATT 1994): Tariffs and quantitative restrictions, the most favoured nation and national treatment principles
4. Basic principles of trade in goods (GATT 1994): Safeguards and exceptions (e.g. environmental protection)
5. Specific regulations of trade in goods: The Antidumping Agreement
6. Specific regulations of trade in goods: The Agreement on Subsidies and Countervailing Duties (e.g. agricultural products)
7. Other WTO regulations: Trade in services (GATS)
8. Other WTO regulations: Intellectual property (TRIPS)
9. Regional trade agreements
10. Trade Liberalisations and Development

Module Skills

Skills Type Skills details
Application of Number
Communication Assignment and oral presentation; participation with online discussion group
Improving own Learning and Performance Improving own learning and performance: Studying the material and writing the assignment
Information Technology Module requires the use of IT as a core resource for locating legal
Personal Development and Career planning Gaining confidence in legal thinking and analysis
Problem solving Assignment on the chosen theme and poster presentation
Research skills The module seeks to develop practical legal skills and a theoretical engagement with law and regulation
Subject Specific Skills Apply generic skills to specific subjects of the theme through the assignment
Team work Online discussion group


This module is at CQFW Level 7