The WTO Appellate Body's Report in the Shrimp/Turtle case dismisses the application by the Panel of Article XX of the GATT Agreement. A unilateral measure cannot be excluded from the application of this Article merely because of its design. GATT Article XX requires a case-by-case approach.
The "related to" test of GATT Article XX(g) requires a close relationship of ends and means. The US measures at issue amount to unjustifiable discrimination, because US officials applied a rigid and unbending standard for the granting of import licences, and failed to take account of all conservation measures in the exporting countries. The US legislation was also held to lead to arbitrary discrimination on due process grounds.
The Report signals the further integration of international environmental developments in free trade law.European Energy and Environmental Law Review