World Trade Organization (WTO)

The World Trade Organization (WTO) is an intergovernmental organization that regulates international trade. The WTO deals with regulation of trade in goods, services and intellectual property between participating countries by providing a framework for
negotiating trade agreements and a dispute resolution process aimed at enforcing participants’ adherence to WTO agreements, which are signed by representatives of member governments and ratified by their parliaments.

The role of WTO in international trade is as stipulated in the agreement establishing it and it includes:

1. Facilitating the implementation, administration and operation and furthering the objectives of the agreement establishing it and other multilateral trade agreements and providing the framework for the implementation, administration and operation of the
plurality trade agreement
2. Providing the forum for negotiations among its members concerning their multilateral trade relations in matters dealt with under the agreements in the annexes to the agreement setting it up and for the results of such negotiations as may be decided by the ministerial conference.
3. Administering the understanding on rules and procedures governing the settlement of disputes or the dispute settlement understanding which annex 2 to the agreement setting it up.
4. Administering the trade policy review mechanism in annex 3 of the agreement setting it up, and
5. Cooperating as appropriate with the International Monetary Fund and the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (World Bank) with a view of achieving greater coherence in global economic policy making. This is aimed at building better understanding and coordination between a trade organisation like WTO and monetary institutions like IMF and World Bank. It may be said in passing that these are two financial institutions without good reputation with developing countries and that are seen
by them to have been recommending economic reforms and structural adjustment programmes that destroy, rather than rebuild, their economies.

The ultimate goal of the multilateral institution of GATT (General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade) and WTO is the provision of freer global trade and economic relationship among members and that GATT is designed to achieve freer trade and to improve market access by:

  • having all protection take the form of tariffs;
  • holding multilateral negotiation at which those tariffs are lowered and bound;
  • ensuring that these agreements are implemented by requiring that any increase in a bound tariff must be compensated by the reduction of another;
  • providing a mechanism by which signatories can settle disputes.

The WTO is an international body which not only takes care of the international trades but also actively participates on business improvisation. It always put required effort to keep the peaceful trans-boundary trades and to solve the disputes if arises among the member countries. We can‘t think of international trade happening in absence of WTO and all the members are following the protocols set by WTO. Although there are various views on role of WTO but as far as my view is concerned, WTO plays an important positive role for the international trades and it‘s always beneficial for the countries to trade trans-boundary being the member of the WTO.

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