CIEL and WWF express concern about the European Commission’s decision to appeal in WTO dispute on Retreaded Tyres

September 4, 2007

In an open letter to the European Commission’s Trade Commissioner Mandelson, CIEL and WWF Europe express their concern about the EC’s decision to appeal the WTO Panel report in the Brazil-Retreaded-Tyres dispute. The report, which addresses the legality of Brazil’s import ban on retreaded tyres for health and environmental reasons, has made an important contribution to the progressive development of WTO’s jurisprudence on environment and trade. On September 3, the EC filed its notice of appeal with the World Trade Organization (WTO), indicating that it would challenge the Panel’s environment and health-related findings.

In their letter, CIEL and WWF urge the EC to either withdraw their intention to appeal or, at a minimum, to focus any appeal narrowly to avoid compromising the ability of WTO Members to protect life, health, and the environment.

In addition, because of the undeniable public importance of this case and precedent-setting effect any Appellate Body decision will have, the two groups ask that an appeal in this case be conducted in a transparent and open manner. The most effective way of achieving this is by posting pleadings (including with respect to appeals) on the official governmental web site contemporaneously with their being filed with the WTO, and by web casting hearings in real time.


  • On September 5, 2007, the German NGO Forum on Environment and Development, a coalition of 50 NGOs working on environment and development, also sent an open letter to Trade Commissioner Mandelson.
  • On Sept 20, 2007, the Brazilian Forum of NGOs and Social Movements for the Environment and the Development (FBOMS) and the Brazilian Network for PeoplesĀ“ Integration (REBRIP) also sent a letter to Commissioner Mandelson, requesting that the EU respects the decision made by the WTO panel and withdraws this appeal.

For more information, please contact: Marcos Orellana,, +1 202 785-8700.