The international rules-based order, a common approach to economic governance upheld by a network of international organizations, is under threat. Its credibility and legitimacy has been eroded by widespread dissatisfaction with the uneven distribution of the benefits of globalization.
For the global trading order, dissatisfaction has focused on the working of the World Trade Organization. Now that the WTO’s appellate function has collapsed, fallout must be expected. Are there viable alternatives, or will the WTO limp along as the global trade order fractures into multiple trading blocs? What are the costs of a breakdown of the multilateral trade rulebook? And importantly, what comes next for the system?