The tension between international economic law and the protection of human rights is considered. Important technical and policy aspects of the tension are illustrated by considering the legality under the WTO Government Procurement Agreement 1994 of requirements in government contracts that attempt to further social policy objectives. The current controversy concerning the use by state and local governments in the United States of 'selective purchasing' laws to influence the human rights policies of foreign governments, particularly the controversial Massachusetts legislation relating to Myanmar (Burma), provides the opportunity for considering how these tensions might be resolved.
"International Economic Law and the Pursuit of Human Rights: A Framework for Discussion of the Legality of 'Selective Purchasing' Laws under the WTO Government Procurement Agreement"
Journal of International Economic Law