Subsidy regulation in WTO Law

Some implications for fossil fuels and renewable energy

Anna Marhold

Research output: Working paperDiscussion paperOther research output

Abstract

This contribution discusses WTO subsidies disciplines in the context of the energy sector. After laying out the relevant disciplines, it will discuss the paradox of WTO law with respect to subsidies towards fossil fuels vis-à-vis those towards renewable energy. It is clear that subsidies on clean energy production and consumption are needed to correct market failures and to promote legitimate policy goals such as contributing to sustainable development through the scale up of clean energy, including expanding its trade.2 However, experience has shown that support schemes for clean energy by their nature and design make them sensitive to WTO dispute settlement. Much more harmful subsidies on fossil fuels, on the other hand, are omnipresent yet often escape being addressed in the multilateral trading system. The contribution will draw upon the examples of ‘energy dual pricing’ and Feed-In Tariffs (FITs). It will argue that while it may be difficult to tackle fossil fuels subsidies in the WTO forum, more efforts are needed to (re)legalise environmental subsidies.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages27
Publication statusPublished - 5 Oct 2016

Publication series

NameTILEC Discussion Paper
Volume2016-022

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renewable energy
WTO
subsidy
regulation
Law
energy
energy production
market failure
energy consumption
pricing
sustainable development
experience

Keywords

  • WTO law
  • international economic law
  • law and economics
  • energy
  • environment
  • subsidies
  • state aid
  • fossil fuels
  • renewable energy

Cite this

Marhold, A. (2016). Subsidy regulation in WTO Law: Some implications for fossil fuels and renewable energy. (TILEC Discussion Paper; Vol. 2016-022).
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Subsidy regulation in WTO Law : Some implications for fossil fuels and renewable energy. / Marhold, Anna.

2016. (TILEC Discussion Paper; Vol. 2016-022).

Research output: Working paperDiscussion paperOther research output

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