Topics handled by WTO committees and agreements
Issues covered by the WTO’s committees and agreements




> Japan — Alcoholic Beverages II, p. 16, DSR 1996:I, p. 97 at 110
> Chile — Alcoholic Beverages, para. 60
> US — FSC, para. 90
> US — FSC, para. 98

T.3.1 Japan — Alcoholic Beverages II, p. 16, DSR 1996:I, p. 97 at 110     back to top

… Members of the WTO are free to pursue their own domestic goals through internal taxation or regulation so long as they do not do so in a way that violates Article III or any of the other commitments they have made in the WTO Agreement.

T.3.2 Chile — Alcoholic Beverages, para. 60     back to top
(WT/DS87/AB/R, WT/DS110/AB/R)

Members of the WTO have sovereign authority to determine the basis or bases on which they will tax goods, such as, for example, distilled alcoholic beverages, and to classify such goods accordingly, provided of course that the Members respect their WTO commitments. The reference in Ad Article III:2, second sentence, of the GATT 1994 to “not similarly taxed” is not in itself a prohibition against classifying goods for revenue and regulatory purposes that Members set for themselves as legitimate and desirable. Members of the WTO are free to tax distilled alcoholic beverages on the basis of their alcohol content and price, as long as the tax classification is not applied so as to protect domestic production over imports. Alcohol content, like any other basis or criterion of taxation, is subject to the legal standard embodied in Article III:2 of the GATT 1994.

T.3.3 US — FSC, para. 90     back to top

… A Member, in principle, has the sovereign authority to tax any particular categories of revenue it wishes. It is also free not to tax any particular categories of revenues. …

T.3.4 US — FSC, para. 98     back to top

… Members of the WTO are not obliged, by WTO rules, to tax any categories of income, whether foreign- or domestic-source income. …

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