In early September, we wrote about the choice faced by China in relation to a WTO panel report which rejected China's WTO complaint against a U.S. safeguard measure on certain solar products. Would China appeal the report, or let it be adopted? We now have the answer, as the WTO has circulated China's notice of appeal.
In terms of how this appeal will proceed, there are currently 21 panel reports on appeal, with no Appellate Body to hear them. It is not clear if or when the Appellate Body will be restored, and if at some point it does return, it will likely take a while to work through the backlog of cases.
In the meantime, the WTO panel found that the United States is not in violation, so no action needs to be taken on the U.S. side. The United States is also in the midst of considering whether to extend the safeguard measure beyond the initial four year term, which expires on February 6, 2022.