Talking Disputes: The Argentina-Financial Services Case (Appellate Body)

May 25, 2016 - 5:15pm - 7:30pm

WTO Room S2

WTI Advisors and ICTSD (International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development) jointly invite you to another "Talking Disputes" discussion in Geneva on 25 May 2016.


The event 

The event will discuss the recent WTO Appellate Body report on Argentina – Financial Services (DS453) – a case that addresses some key questions on the regulation of trade in services in general and financial services in particular, including the issue of "likeness" of services and service providers. Panama challenged eight financial, taxation, foreign exchange and registration measures imposed by Argentina mostly on services and services suppliers from "non-cooperative" countries – countries that do not exchange information with Argentina for purposes of fiscal transparency. 


The Appellate Body reversed the panel's findings that services and service suppliers from non-cooperative countries and those of cooperative countries or Argentine ones are like, because the panel had failed to assess whether the measures make a distinction based exclusively on origin (which could have justified considering them like). The Appellate Body also faulted the panel for considering that the legal standard of "treatment no less favourable" includes further investigation into a measure's regulatory objective, after a finding that the measures modify the conditions of competition to the detriment of like services or service suppliers of any other Member. The Appellate Body rejected Panama's arguments in the appeal with respect to the panel's findings under the general exceptions provision under the the General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS) and the prudential exception of the Annex on Financial Services. The Appellate Body ultimately reversed all of the panel's conclusions of violations but notably did not rule on the WTO-consistency of Argentina's measures, and as a result, did not make recommendations either on compliance or implementation.


Practical info

Venue: Room S2, World Trade Organization (WTO), Rue de Lausanne 154, 1202 Geneva

Registration: Registration is mandatory. Please register online by COB on Monday, 23 May 2016

WebcastThis event will also be streamed live online on the event page. Online viewers may send questions through Twitter using the hash tag #TalkingDisputes@ICTSDTradeLaw@WTIAdvisors or through the comment function on the ICTSD event page. Selected questions will be read and addressed by the speakers during the Q&A session.


We look forward to seeing you at the event. 




17:15 Panel Discussion 



Hannes Schloemann, WTI Advisors 


Presentation of the Appellate Body's findings in Argentina – Financial Services:

Daniel Crosby, King & Spalding 



Joost Pauwelyn, Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies 

Jacques Sasseville, Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)

John Cooke, TheCityUK 


18:15 Open Discussion 


19:30 Reception