The Advisory Centre on WTO Law (ACWL)


  • Fernando Pièrola-Castro Advisory Center on WTO Law
  • Niall Meagher Advisory Center on WTO Law
  • Leah Buencamino Advisory Center on WTO Law


The ACWL was created 20 years ago to mitigate financial and human resource inequalities that prevented some WTO members from fully benefiting from the benefits of the multilateral trading system. The creation of the ACWL was based on the idea that the credibility and acceptability of the system can only be guaranteed if all members can participate effectively. This article explains how the ACWL provides accessible legal aid through its three services: legal advice, assistance in WTO dispute settlement procedures, and training. It assesses the extent to which these services have enabled countries eligible for ACWL services to better understand how to defend their rights and fulfill their obligations under the WTO Agreements. Finally, the document examines the challenges facing the ACWL and its future prospects.