Issue No. 688, 1-15 May 2019
WTO meeting reveals divisions among membership

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South firmly rejects US proposal on S&DT
Dozens of developing countries have opposed a US proposal to limit the number of countries that can take recourse to flexibilities in WTO rules, stressing that such dispensations are a right of developing member states and are needed to bridge the development gap with the rich nations.
by D. Ravi Kanth

US rejects facilitator’s recommendations to resolve AB crisis
The futue of the WTO’s Appellate Body – which will cease to function in December if no new members are appointed – remains up in the air following US rejection of a proposed route out of the impasse.
by D. Ravi Kanth

“Friends of the system”seek extension of e-commerce and TRIPS moratoriums
A number of WTO members have proposed that the current moratoriums on customs duties on electronic transmissions and on “non-violation and situation complaints” under the TRIPS Agreement – of interest mainly to developed and developing countries respectively – be extended until the WTO’s next Ministerial Conference in June.
by D. Ravi Kanth

Financialization of development lending carries new risks – report
A scheme to use securitization markets to fund international development projects in developing countries would give rise to financial risks and undermine national economic development efforts, cautions a new report.
by Rick Rowden


Developing economies’ subordinate financialization
Jomo Kwame Sundaram and Michael Lim Mah Hui explain how the increasing openness of developing countries to transnational capital flows is constraining their scope for economic policymaking.

OECD tax reform proposal could be better
A proposal for what has been touted as the biggest shift in international tax rules for a century still falls short of ensuring fair corporate taxation.
by Anis Chowdhury and Jomo Kwame Sundaram

Austerity “the new normal”
Millions are bearing the ruinous impacts of a worldwide turn to fiscal austerity.
by Isabel Ortiz and Matthew Cummins


A David and Goliath struggle for the 21st century
Skewed national and international laws and policies have ushered in an era of increasing corporate impunity. Affected communities and social movements are pushing for binding global rules that will instead enshrine the primacy of human rights over corporate profit.
by Brid Brennan and Gonzalo Berrón