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Why do governments engage in WTO disputes? What can countries expect to gain from international legal trade battles? This article examines the costs and benefits of the Philippine-Australian dispute regarding Australia's quarantine policy on Philippine fresh fruits and vegetables, a case also of keen interest to a number of countries including those in the European Union, the United States, Canada, Ecuador, Thailand, China, India, and Chile. We find that a host of institutional, political, and economic factors can trigger disputes under strong, yet debatable, expectations over winning a case in the WTO.


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