Challenging Localization: Analyzing Data Localization against GATS

Amay Bahri
National Law University Delhi, India.

Volume III – Issue I, 2021

This article explores the validity of data localization measures against Market Access obligation under General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS). I explain how data localization measures violate market access obligations due to the restrictions they cause, and how these restrictions fall under the 6 paragraphs of Article XVI:2. The article also explores the compatibility of justification which is given for introducing this measure by analyzing it against the general exceptions provided in GATS. The article does not explore the possible justification under security exception because such a defense requires certain prevailing circumstances that cannot be assumed. In Part 1 of the article, I explore making a prima facie case of violation of market access obligation and in Part 2, I analyze the justification of general exception against data localization measure.


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