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World Trade Organization
By Sadiq Patel

To Prof. Arpita Shrivastava

About WTO
Location :- Geneva, Switzerland Established: 1 January 1995 Created by : Uruguay Round negotiations (1986-94) Membership :153 countries (on 23 July 2008) Budget : 185 million Swiss francs for 2008

Secretariat Staff 2007 : 625

Head : Director-General, Pascal Lamy

World Trade Organization

The World Trade Organization (WTO) is the only international organization dealing with the global rules of trade between nations. Its main function is to ensure that trade flows as smoothly, predictably and freely as possible. The organization officially commenced on January 1, 1995, replacing the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT), which commenced in 1948.

Who is WTO ?

It is an organization for trade opening.

Administers global trade agreements

It is a forum for governments to negotiate trade agreements.

It is a place for them to settle trade disputes. It operates a system of trade rules. Essentially, the WTO is a place where member governments try to sort out the trade problems they face with each other.

The WTO has nearly 150 members, accounting for over 97% of world trade. Around 30 others are negotiating membership. Decisions are made by the entire membership. This is typically by consensus. A majority vote is also possible but it has never been used in the WTO, and was extremely rare under the WTOs predecessor, GATT. The WTOs agreements have been ratified in all members parliaments.

Organization Structure
Ministerial Conference. General Council. Goods Council, Services Council and Intellectual Property (TRIPS) Council. specialized committees, working groups and working parties.

What WTO do ?

The WTO is run by its member governments. All major decisions are made by the membership as a whole, either by ministers or by their ambassadors or delegates .

Trade negotiations Implementation and monitoring Dispute settlement Building trade capacity Outreach

Benefits of the WTO

The system helps promote peace Disputes are handled constructively Rules make life easier for all Freer trade cuts the costs of living It provides more choice of products and qualities Trade raises incomes Trade stimulates economic growth The basic principles make life more efficient Governments are shielded from lobbying The system encourages good government

Principles of WTO
The WTO agreements are lengthy and complex because they are legal texts covering a wide range of activities. But a number of simple, fundamental principles run throughout all of these documents. These principles are the foundation of the multilateral trading system.

Non-discrimination More open Predictable and transparent More competitive More beneficial for less developed countries Protect the environment

Development of Developing countries

Over three quarters of WTO members are developing or least-developed countries. All WTO agreements contain special provision for them, including longer time periods to implement agreements and commitments, measures to increase their trading opportunities and support to help them build the infrastructure for WTO work, handle disputes, and implement technical standards.

Current Round of Negotiations

The WTO launched the current round of negotiations, the Doha Development Agenda (DDA) or Doha Round, at the fourth ministerial conference in Doha, Qatar in November 2001. The Doha round was to be an ambitious effort to make globalization more inclusive and help the world's poor, particularly by slashing barriers and subsidies in farming.

Questions and Answers