Mexico tax measures on soft drinks and other beverages



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European Communities


      1. The European Communities submits that the Appellate Body should uphold the Panel's finding that it did not have the discretion to decline to exercise jurisdiction in this case. The European Communities submits that "the functions and obligations of WTO Panels must be established on the basis of the DSU, and particularly Article 11 thereof."40 On this basis, the European Communities agrees that a panel has an inherent power to establish whether it has jurisdiction, and whether a particular matter is within its jurisdiction. However, the European Communities argues that a panel may not freely, or by "the notion of 'judicial economy'", decide to refrain from exercising its jurisdiction "in a case properly brought before it under the DSU."41

      2. The European Communities asserts, furthermore, that the Appellate Body should uphold the Panel's finding that only measures made applicable in the domestic legal order of a WTO Member constitute "laws or regulations" within the meaning of Article XX(d). The European Communities disagrees, however, with the Panel's finding that "international agreements, even when incorporated into the domestic law of a WTO Member, can never be regarded as 'laws or regulations' for the purposes of Article XX(d)".42 In addition, the European Communities takes issue with the Panel's interpretation of the terms "to secure compliance" as requiring a degree of certainty in the results that may be achieved through the measure.
  • Japan


        1. Japan disagrees with the Panel's interpretation of the terms "to secure compliance" in Article XX(d). In this regard, Japan submits that Article XX(d) does not necessarily exclude measures that have, as a purpose, to secure compliance, but are not accompanied by compulsory enforcement. According to Japan, compliance can be secured by a request or a command without being accompanied by any coercion. Japan considers that the Panel erred by indicating that the determination of whether a measure is designed "to secure compliance" should be analyzed based on the degree of certainty of its outcome. Nevertheless, Japan agrees with the Panel's finding that
          Article XX(d) does not cover international agreements. Japan explains that the terms "laws or regulations", read together with the phrase "to secure compliance", "presuppose a hierarchical structure that is associated with the relation between the state and its subjects"43 and, therefore, excludes international agreements.



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