Back door wide open? Targeted dumping and continued application of zeroing

Jaemin Lee, Youngjeen Cho

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to examine zeroing jurisprudence under the WTO’s Anti-Dumping Agreement and to see if the jurisprudence can still be applied to situations of targeted dumping where dumping takes place in a specific region, at specific timing, or for specific consumer groups. Design/methodology/approach: This paper examines the prior decisions of the WTO panels and the Appellate Body relating to the zeroing practice. It categorizes the key elements of these prior decisions where the zeroing practice has been found WTO-inconsistent. While there has been no specific dispute addressing targeted dumping per se, this paper proves that core elements of the zeroing practice have been anatomized and dissected by the panels and the Appellate Body in prior proceedings. The paper then analyzes whether these key elements still exist in the specific context of targeted dumping and thus whether application of zeroing is still prohibited in targeted dumping situations. Findings: The existing jurisprudence on zeroing from previous WTO disputes should apply to targeted dumping situations as well. Unbridled application of zeroing in the targeted dumping situations will effectively nullify the existing zeroing jurisprudence accumulated through a decade of WTO disputes. If unchecked, this calculation methodology in the context of targeted dumping may open the back door wide open for “zeroing” negative anti-dumping margins. The paper concludes that the existing jurisprudence on zeroing stands for the proposition that zeroing in targeted dumping should also be prohibited. Originality/value: This paper examines the legality of the zeroing practice in targeted dumping situations, which has been one of the most controversial issues among WTO members for the past several years. The analyses and discussions contained in this paper will provide legal guideline to evaluate zeroing in targeted dumping within the WTO framework. The outcome of the research will provide a platform for continued research and discussion in this area.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)202-228
Number of pages27
JournalJournal of Korea Trade
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2016

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016, © Korea Trade and Research Association.


  • Anti-dumping proceeding
  • Dumping margin calculation
  • Fair comparison
  • Targeted dumping
  • Zeroing


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