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The proliferation of regional trade agreements, including both free trade agreements and customs unions, over the past decade has provoked many new legal issues in WTO law, public international law, and an emerging law of regional trade agreements. The various Parts of this book chart this development from a number of perspectives.
Part 1 introduces the economic and political underpinnings of regional trade agreements, their constitutional functions, and their role as a locus for integrating trade and human rights.
Part 2 examines the WTO rules governing regional trade agreements, focusing on a number of areas in which regional trade agreements prove problematic, such as trade remedies, regulatory standards and rules of origin.
Part 3 investigates areas in which regional trade agreements go beyond WTO rules, in areas such as intellectual property, investment, competition, services, sustainable development and mutual recognition, while
Part 4 is devoted to the dispute settlement mechanisms of regional trade agreements, and includes illuminating case studies.
Part 5 explores the interrelationship between regional trade agreements and the WTO system from the perspective of public international law, involving questions with significance beyond the trade community.