an organization that intends to supervise and liberize international Trade.
officially commenced on January 1, 1995
under the Marrakech Agreement, replacing the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT), which commenced in 1948.
The organization deals with regulation of trade between participating countries; it provides a framework for negotiating and formalizing 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.
Treaty organization affiliated with the United Nations whose purpose was to facilitate international Trade.
The primary actions of the organization were to freeze and reduce tariff levels on various commodities.
created in 1947.
originally intended to become a part of the International Trade Organization (ITO); however, the ITO failed to be created, so the GATT was left as an independent organization. In 1994, GATT was superseded by the WTO.
WTO members (which includes the US and most industrialized countries) grant each other 'MFN' or Most Favored Nation status, which means minimal import tariffs.
The Philippine government is also not a beneficiary, except to the extent that Filipinos get to buy cheaper chickens and export their own goods more readily abroad. In fact, in the short term, the Philippine government loses out because they no longer receive import fees on chickens. That's why GATT was hard to get countries to sign on to -- because governments had to look at the longer term.
by the time of the Uruguay round, many countries considered the exception of agriculture to be sufficiently glaring that they refused to sign a new deal without some movement on agricultural products.
countries known as the "Cairns Group", continues to be the most substantial trade
liberalization agreement in agricultural products in the history of trade negotiations.
The goals of the agreement were to improve market access for agricultural products, reduce domestic support of agriculture in the form of price-distorting subsidies and quotas, eliminate over time export subsidies on agricultural products and to harmonize to the extent possible sanitary and phytosanitary measures between member countries.
It was the most ambitious round to date, hoping to expand the competence of the GATT to important new areas such as services, capital, intellectual property, textiles, and agriculture. 123 countries took part in the round.
It was also the first set of multilateral trade negotiations in which developing countries had played an active role.
Agriculture was essentially exempted from previous agreements as it was given special status in the areas of import quotas and export subsidies, with only mild caveats.