The Implementation of the WTO Multilateral Trade Agreements, the "Built-In" Agenda, New Issues, and the Developing Countries

by Xiaobing Tang*

bookThis is part of a series of papers on trade and development that the Third World Network is publishing on issues that are of public concern for countries of the South in particular and for the international community and public in general. The aim of the Papers is to generate discussion and contribute to the search for appropriate policies towards development that is oriented to fulfilling human needs, social equity and environmental sustainability.

Size: 16.5cm X 24 cm
Pages: 68

                                              Price                 Postage

Third World countries            US$4.00            US$2.00 (Air); US$1.00 (Sea)
Other foreign countries           US$6.00            US$3.00 (Air); US$1.00 (Sea)
Malaysia                                RM7.00             RM1.00

* Xiaobing Tang has been a staff member of the Secretariat of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) since March 1986. He began working in its Manufactures Division on issues relating to trade policy, trade laws and multilateral trade negotiations as an expert in international trade in textiles, and subsequently as an economic affairs officer of the International Textiles and Clothing Bureau (ITCB). Since November 1987, Mr Tang has been working in the Trade Analysis and Systemic Issues Branch of the Division on International Trade in Goods and Services and Commodities (DITC), UNCTAD, undertaking substantive research and preparing analytical studies and papers on international and national trade policy issues and laws of trade in goods. Before March 1986, the author served as a trade official in the Chinese Government and participated in the negotiations of China's accession to the Multi-Fibre Agreements. He was also involved in the substantive preparations leading to China's application for GATT membership.


1. Introduction

2. Overview of the Implementation of the WTO Multilateral Trade Agreements

(i) Establishment of institutional mechanisms
(ii) Notifications and reviews
(iii) Ongoing negotiations of unfinished business
(iv) Dispute settlement
(v) Accession negotiations

3. Problems Deriving from the Implementation - Main Concerns to the Developing Countries

(i) Fulfillment of the notification requirements
(ii) Implementation of substantive commitments
(iii) Special problems faced by the least developed countries
(iv) Textiles and clothing
(v) Anti-dumping and countervailing measures
(vi) Subsidies
(vii) Trade-related investment measures (TRIMs)
(viii) Trade-related aspects of intellectual property rights (TRIPs)
(ix) Dispute settlement mechanism/unilateral measures

4. Key Elements of the WTO Built-In Agenda: Areas of Importance or Concern to the Developing Countries

(i) Unfinished business
(ii) Special review
(iii) Regular review
(iv) New negotiations
(v) New mandate provided for in the SMD

5. Further Liberalization in the Area of Tariffs


The WTO "Built-In" Agenda: A Checklist of Issues