World Trade Organisation (wto)

The World Trade Organization (WTO) is the only global international organization dealing with the rules of trade between nations. (It is not a specialized agency of UN).
  • The goal is to ensure that trade flows as smoothly, predictably and freely as possible.
  • The WTO (headquartered in Geneva) was born out of negotiations; the bulk of the WTO’s current work comes from the 1986– 94 negotiations called the Uruguay Round and earlier negotiations under the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT).
  • The WTO is currently the host to new negotiations, under the ‘Doha Development Agenda’ launched in 2001.
  • The WTO agreements cover goods, services, and intellectual property.
  • Most Favored Nation is the principle of WTO which requires treatment of all nations equally.UPSC Prelims 2024 dynamic test series
  • Under the WTO agreements, countries cannot normally discriminate between their trading partners. If they grant some country a special favor (such as a lower customs duty rate for one of their products), then they’ll have to do the same for all other WTO members. In simple words, it means do not favor any nation.
  • De Minimis provision: Under this provision developed countries are allowed to maintain trade-distorting subsidies or ‘Amber Box’ subsidies to a level of 5% of total value of agricultural output. For developing countries this figure was 10%.

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