World Trade Organization (WTO) members have, once again, been unable to agree on the appointment of new members to the Appellate Body (AB) in a timely fashion, as one member's term expired on June 30, 2017, another member resigned in August 2017, and a third member's term will expire in December 2017, with no consensus on a process to fill those posts. The 2017 standoff follows on the heels of a fractious debate during the summer of 2016 over the United States’ decision to block the reappointment of AB member Sueng Wha Chang of Korea to a second term. Given that the AB has just seven members, the inability to quickly appoint new members to replace those whose terms have expired only adds to the difficulty of rendering decisions within the tight time frames called for in the WTO rules.
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