A mega-RTA such as the planned Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) or the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) may overlap another RTA, with the result that some of the parties to the mega-RTA's overlapping RTA may become common parties, while others may remain as single-agreement parties. If the mega-RTA provides rules of origin based on the change in tariff classification (CTC)-with-exception criterion such as yarn-forward rules, the rules of origin will become more restrictive with respect to the imports of the excluded intermediate goods from the single-agreement parties after the formation of the mega-RTA than before, thus failing to meet the requirement under GATT Article XXIV:5. The exclusionary rules of origin of the mega-RTA draw the trade away from the single-agreement parties, causing ‘fracture’ in the mega-RTA's overlapping RTA. As a legal remedy to the problem, the mega-RTA should eliminate the restriction from the CTC-with-exception criterion by adopting the rules of origin based on the non-exclusionary criteria such as the value-added or the CTC criterion that does not presumptively exclude the use of certain non-originating intermediate inputs.
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