CSR and the Law of the WTO – The Impact of Tuna Dolphin II and EC–Seal Products

  • Carola Glinski


This article deals with WTO law as a possible obstacle to pursue CSR policies. Drawing in particular from the reports in Tuna Dolphin II and EC – Seal Products, it discusses the three main issues within WTO law related to the hybrid character of CSR regulation between private and public and between national and international: First, the general admissibility for the importing state to address socially and/or environmentally responsible production standards abroad and thus – from its perspective – extraterritorial situations (so-called ‘non-product-related production measures’); second, the attribution of (more or less) private CSR regulation to the importing state; and third, the question whether and under which conditions private (transnational) CSR standards can be regarded as ‘international standards’ under the law of the WTO.