The World Trade Organization ( Wto ) And Multilateral Trading System

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Many consider the World Trade Organisation (WTO) and the multilateral trading system it supports to be essential for advancing global development objectives. This essay will critically examine the objectives of the WTO and explain how the organisation aims to advance development globally. The essay will explore the significance of trade in the politics of development and how the WTO is central to that agenda. Understanding how the WTO is designed to operate will provide insight into why some believe that such a system is essential to development. The premise will then be critically assessed to explore the counter argument that the systems and rules of the WTO allow and even encourage practices that can exploit underdeveloped nations and undermine global development objectives. The impact and consequences of WTO treaties such as the General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS) and the Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) agreement will be used to illustrate why there is a significant groundswell of opposition toward the WTO by people who believe that the multilateral trading system it promotes actually harms rather than advances global development. The World Trade Organisation (WTO) is regarded as one of the key institutions of global governance in the international political economy and is made up of 160 member states (Williams & Ford, 2007, p. 268). The establishment of the WTO in 1995 was an attempt to transform the institutional setting of world

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