Main Activites

Trade Negotiations

  • Aims to reduce or eliminate trade barriers through negotiation
  • Does this by encouraging countries to draw up trading agreements covering matters like subsidies
  • Aims to bring about trade liberalisation and lays down procedures for settling disputes

Implementation and Monitoring

  • Employs various councils and committees to administer and monitor the application of the WTO's rules for trade in goods, services and intellectual property rights
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More Activites

Settling Trade Disputes

  • Trade disputes are not uncommon
  • WTO's procedure for resolving trade disputes is vital for enforcing the rules and making sure that trade flows smoothly
  • Countries bring disputes to the WTO is they think their rights under their agreements have not been preserved

Building Membership

  • Helps and encourages new members to join up
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Criticisms of the WTO

  • It's undemocratic: the WTO rules are wtten by and for corporations. Views of consumers, environmentalists are ignored
  • It favours the 'rights' of corporations over those of workers
  • It's destroying the environment
  • Favours wealth nations over poorer ones
  • Causing hardship for poorer nations
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World Trade Patterns

Increase in World Trade

  • Better transport and communications: goods can be shipped more quickly and cheaply
  • Relaxing of trade barriers
  • Developments of multinationals
  • Travel and consumer awareness
  • Trade agreements

In Developed Countries

  • Loss of trade in manufacturing
  • More air travel
  • Widening of the development gap

Trade in Developing Countries

  • An increase in net migration
  • Increased FDI in Africa
  • Rise in commodity dependence
  • Debt cancellation
  • Reduction in barriers
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