The WTO has struggled with the treatment of nonmarket economies (NMEs). What was a nonissue in the original GATT (because of the homogeneity of participants) became quite an issue with the accession of formally centrally planned economies, which were not transformed to market economies, at least not in the eyes of the incumbents. Contracting this issue has proved to be so far always wanting, and leaving it to adjudicators has not produced good results either. With respect to Chinese SOEs this risks continuing to be an issue, since the contractually agreed deadline (2016) after which China should not be treated as NME anymore, risks proving to be full of holes and loopholes.
Petros C. Mavroidis & Merit E. Jano,
Free Markets, State Involvement, and the WTO: Chinese State Owned Enterprises (SOEs) in the Ring,
European University Institute, Robert Schuman Centre for Advanced Studies, Global Governance Programme Working Paper No. RSCAS 2017/13
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