The New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade today announced Dr Penelope Ridings as New Zealand’s nomination for the pool of arbitrators established under the WTO interim appeals arrangement.

The Ministry welcomes the Cabinet decision to nominate Dr Ridings for the pool of arbitrators. Dr Ridings is a person of recognised standing in the international legal community, and brings with her extensive experience in trade law.

Dr Ridings was formerly the New Zealand Government’s Chief International Legal Adviser, and acted as Counsel in a range of disputes before panels and the Appellate Body at the WTO. Dr Ridings has also served as an independent first-stage panellist in a number of WTO disputes. She has also appeared as Counsel before the International Court of Justice and the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea.

The interim solution ensures appeals in trade disputes between participants can still be heard in the absence of a fully functioning Appellate Body.

Participating WTO Members have until 30 May to nominate a candidate for the pool of arbitrators. Following a process to ensure nominees possess the appropriate skills and experience, participants will then agree on a final pool of 10 arbitrators. Three arbitrators will be selected to hear any given appeal.

The interim solution was launched (external link) on 30 April 2020 with 19 participants. It remains open to all other WTO Members wishing to join.