The Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership and the Legal Challenges of Protecting against Climate Change: Some Overall Observations

Research output: Working paperResearch


The Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) aims at improving trade between the RCEP members. The RCEP Agreement is confined to matters concerning trade and competition. The problem is that there might be spillover effects if the improved trade has a detrimental effect on the climate, and some RCEP Members will protect a higher climate standard than others. This paper addresses the role the dispute settlement institution of the RCEP may get due to the omission of climate protection in the RCEP agreement. More specifically, the paper discusses the conflict that may arise between the trade provisions of the RCEP agreement and climate change protection from a legal perspective. A conflict that may end before the RCEP dispute settlement system and thus eventually will be of legal resolve instead of a political solution. As the RCEP Agreement has explicit reference to World Trade Organization (WTO) law, some guidance may be found in WTO case law. However, even though some clarification can be found in WTO case law, it would be recommended that the RCEP members at one point consider introducing climate provisions into the RCEP Agreement in order to give clearer guidance to the RCEP dispute settlement institution.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationFrederiksberg
PublisherCopenhagen Business School [wp]
Number of pages20
Publication statusPublished - 2020
SeriesCBS LAW Research Paper


  • Climate change law
  • Regional comprehensive economic partnership
  • WTO law
  • Dispute settlement

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