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Can any country use the “national security” excuse to bolster R&D by going against WTO rules? Big countries like China and the U.S. seem to abuse this clause all the time, yet small countries like Singapore doesn't seem to ever use it, so I was wondering if there was a particular reason for it. Is it in the rules, or is it just because of political reasons? What are those reasons?

https://www.csis.org/analysis/wtos-first-ruling-national-security-what-does-it-mean-united-states

On April 5, 2019, a World Trade Organization (WTO) dispute settlement
panel issued a landmark ruling in a dispute between Russia and Ukraine
in which Russia claimed it had taken trade-restrictive measures for
the purpose of protecting its national security.