World Trade Organization
 


ARTICLES ON WTO ISSUES

Global Trade In Services & GATS

The term "Services" covers a wide range of heterogeneous products and activities of industries that typically dominate absolute output and employment in most countries. It encompasses both intermediate services (communications, transport, financial, construction and business services) and final demand services (tourism and travel, recreation, education, health and environmental services). According to a definition a service is an economic activity that adds value either directly to another economic unit or to a good belonging to another economic unit. Consequently, services have as a defining feature the requirement for direct interaction between producers and consumers (firms or households) before the service can be rendered. The trade in services can be distinguished from trade in goods in that they are intangible and invisible. Furthermore, services unlike goods cannot be stored, that is they are often produced and consumed at the same time.

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Copyright © 2003-2008 WTO Cell P&D, Govt of the Punjab.
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Pakistan´s Leadership Role

Almost the entire international trade of Pakistan is conducted on multilateral basis rather than under any Free Trade Agreement (FTA) or other preferential basis such as those available to the Least Developed Countries (LDCs). Therefore, the current Round of trade negotiations known as the Doha Development Agenda is crucial for us. Not only it would it would substantially reduce or eliminate discriminatory practices but would also create new market access opportunities. At present our exporters have to pay an average of over 10% duty on exports to the United States and Europe whereas most of our competitors enjoy preferential rates either because they have FTAs with those economies or because they have LDC status. Also our farmers suffer because of huge amount of subsidies paid to farmers in rich countries. Moreover, our skilled and semi-skilled people find it hard to move to other countries where they may be in demand because of labour shortages in those countries because of various kinds of restrictions.

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Pakistan´s Leadership Role at the Hong Kong Ministeria in PDF / DOC format.


Copyright © 2003-2008 WTO Cell P&D, Govt of the Punjab.
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Role of Punjab In Promotion Of Trade

Services are vital to the functioning of the global economy and are becoming increasingly important in view of their contribution in output, employment and trade. International trade in services is regulated by the General Agreement on Services (GATS) of the World Trade Organization (WTO).
In Pakistan, the significance of the services sector is being realized in view of its huge potential for future expansion. It contributes more than 50% to GDP, 34 % of employment and brings about $ 4 billion as workers remittances from abroad. Pakistan has strengths in low labour cost, a young workforce, English language skills, geographical location, cultural ties with Middle Eastern countries, and a growing economy. Traditionally its services exports have mainly comprised travel and related services, tourism, telecommunications and logistics. There is an opportunity to rapidly grow services exports in the area of business services which include financial, engineering, legal and other professional services.

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The Role Of Punjab In Promotion Of Trade In Services in PDF / DOC format.


Copyright © 2003-2008 WTO Cell P&D, Govt of the Punjab.
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Impact Of WTO Policies On Agriculture

Globalization - manifesting in progressive integration of economies and societies has assumed increasing significance in the lives of common people all over the world. The technical ability to ease flow of goods, services, and information across the international borders, has reached immense proportions in the last few decades. In the field of the trade the World Trade Organization (WTO) is the principal international institution responsible for laying down rules for the smooth conduct of trade in goods and services among nations in this globalized world. This is achieved by developing a set of rules of multilateral trading system which aims to remove, inter alia, trade barriers (tariff and non tariff) as well as reduce and eventually remove domestic support and system of export subsidies that distort international trade between nations. These problems of trade distortion are most conspicuous in agriculture sector.

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Impact Of WTO Policies On Agriculture in PDF / DOC format.


Copyright © 2003-2008 WTO Cell P&D, Govt of the Punjab.
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Globalization for Poverty Reduction

Globalization is the defining theme of the present times. Never ever in history goods, services, people, information and ideas had been able to move so easily across the national frontiers. Globalization has its manifestations that can be understood keeping in view its different dimensions i.e. social, economic, political and environmental. Generally it is equated with economic globalization which is more visible in the form of creation of institutions and processes facilitating flow of money, goods, services and information with scant regard of national frontiers. It further manifests itself in increased harmonization of fiscal, monetary, labor and trade policies and the increasing role of international financial institutions and multinational corporations along with diminution of the role of state in national, regional and sub regional economic development.

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Globalization for Poverty Reduction Why and How in PDF / DOC format.


Copyright © 2003-2008 WTO Cell P&D, Govt of the Punjab.
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Singapore Issues & Developing Countries

The World Trade Organization (WTO), a commentator pointed out, "is still reeling under the impact of the Cancun debacle and has failed to make any tangible headway in the negotiations held since then on any issue" (Economic Business Review, January 19-25, 2004: Dawn). This is an apt observation as outcome of Cancun Conference is, indeed disappointing. One was in fact, looking with a great deal of optimism to the fifth WTO Ministerial. Failure in Cancun has revived the threat to the multilateralism in international trade and provided incentive for the bilaterism as well as for other non-multilateral options. One of the leading Pakistani scholars appropriately has summed up the situation:

The failure of talks at Cancun might mean an end to the progress the world has made towards evolving a trading system that is based on strictly defined rules implemented by an organization (the WTO) that is not beholden to one large trading country (say, the United States or China) or one large trading bloc (say, the European Union). Such an outcome would not benefit any country, rich or poor.

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Singapore Issues & Developing Countries in PDF / DOC format.


Copyright © 2003-2008 WTO Cell P&D, Govt of the Punjab.
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Facilitating Initiation of WTO Disputes

Although the WTO is essentially an international organization in which private individuals do not play any direct role, they are the main beneficiaries of the global trading system. A growing number of WTO provisions such as those concerning public procurement, intellectual property rights or food safety have an immediate impact not only on legal relations between the WTO Members and their citizens but also between individuals themselves.

The WTO system, by providing rules addressed to both States and private parties represents the most sophisticated legal framework ever conceived to govern global trade. However, despite the progressive judicialization of the dispute procedure, private parties have no direct access to the WTO's dispute settlement process in order to complain about government practices that allegedly infringe on a WTO agreement, nor can they rely on rights granted by WTO law before domestic courts. This is despite the fact that they may often be the ones (as exporters or importers) most directly and adversely affected by the measures allegedly violating the WTO Agreements. The same is true of other non-governmental organizations (NGOs) with a general interest in a matter under dispute. They, too, cannot initiate WTO dispute settlement proceedings. May be one of the reasons why private parties are not allowed direct access to the dispute settlement system is that the Members do not want the organization to lose its intergovernmental nature.

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Facilitating Initiation of WTO Disputes Through Private Sector
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Copyright © 2003-2008 WTO Cell P&D, Govt of the Punjab.
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Feasibility of a Free Trade Agreement with US

This Article begins by defining Free Trade Agreement, moves on to justify the need of Pakistan to enter into a Free Trade Agreement with US. Indicates the care and the necessary steps to be taken by the Pakistani Government before finalizing the Agreement. It also gives an idea of the likely implications of these types of Agreements, their effect on global trading system and the possible advantages and disadvantages to Pakistan with respect to the particular Agreement with US.

Since the last decade, trade liberalization and the pursuit of global free trade has undergone a metamorphosis. The political momentum has shifted away from what was seen by some nations as the painstakingly slow process of multilateral tariff negotiations to smaller regional and bilateral arrangements.

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Feasibility of a Free Trade Agreement with US in PDF / DOC format.


Copyright © 2003-2008 WTO Cell P&D, Govt of the Punjab.
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Trade Remedial Laws of Pakistan

Since the establishment of WTO (World Trade Organization) in 1995, many of its member countries have been active in complying with the multilateral trade agreements administered by the Organization. It is this factor of compliance that has also led Pakistan to undergo legislations to bring into effect the rules and regulations provided for in the WTO Agreements.

Pakistan was one of the founding members of GATT (General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade) in 1947 that provided for international rules regarding trade in goods. This GATT 1947 was later annexed to Marrakesh Agreement establishing the World Trade Organization as GATT 1994. Despite being the founder member, Pakistan has been taking a long time to prepare for the challenges posed by international trade regime.

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Copyright © 2003-2008 WTO Cell P&D, Govt of the Punjab.
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Trade with India in Pakistan’s interest

The issue of granting MFN status to India by Pakistan under the WTO provisions had been in the limelight lately. Despite India's granting of MFN status to Pakistan in trade since 1995-96 the latter has not reciprocated likewise. The question that arises in this context is whether the principle of reciprocity is so fundamental to trade under the multilateral trade regime that not granting MFN status to India will amount to a violation of WTO Agreements by Pakistan. Another question that needs due consideration is whether granting MFN status to India lies in Pakistan's economic interests.

If we examine the preamble to the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) it hints at the fundamental principle of reciprocity in trade; the Contracting Parties have declared their desire to contribute to the Agreement's objectives by entering into reciprocal and mutually advantageous arrangements directed to the substantial reduction of tariffs and other barriers to trade and to the elimination of discriminatory treatment in international commerce. Government of Pakistan being among the first group of Contracting Parties to GATT 1947 is expected to respect the same and adhere to it in letter and spirit by granting MFN status to India.

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Trade With India In Pakistan's Interest in PDF / DOC format.


Copyright © 2003-2008 WTO Cell P&D, Govt of the Punjab.
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