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UBC Theses and Dissertations

A Non-market economy’s admission to the General Agreement of Tariffs and Trade: China’s unique situation Yan, Yibing


China's GATT application has been regarded as a unique case. This thesis attempts to explore the unique features of China's GATT application. It starts to review the historical background. It will examine the inherent conflict between GATT and non-market economy system. GATT's previous experience with non-market economy countries will be reviewed as well. China's economic reform and its impact on the GATT application are the focus of the thesis. It will discuss the achievements made through the economic reform and its positive influence on China's GATT membership. It will also address the weakness and insufficiency of the reform, and their negative impact on the GATT application. The author concludes that as long as both GATT and China take a practical approach, a compromise is not impossible. The author suggested a variety of accession mechanisms for China to obtain the membership. Although each of the mechanisms has pros and cons, they all provide useful references for China and GATT. The recent U.S. declaration to support China's GATT application and the new compromise made between both China and U.S. serves as a good example.

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