Are Private Remedies in Domestic Courts Essential for International Trade Agreements to Perform Constitutional Functions with Respect to Sub-Federal Governments?

Schaefer, Matt | January 1, 1997

The term constitutionalism is increasingly discussed in the context of international trade agreements. A prominent example is Professor Petersmann’s writings on the constitutional functions that trade agree- ments could serve by limiting governmental discretion to take welfare- reducing protectionist measures against the long-term interests of a nation and contrary to individual economic liberty.’ The absence of such protectionist constraints and foreign trade rights in domestic con- stitutions can be mitigated (and already is mitigated somewhat) through the development of international trade rules and institutions.