ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

WTOSubscribe to WTO

China's Membership of WTO

In sharp contrast to the perpetual grumbling in India about the WTO and the assertions now and then that India would be better off walking out of the organisation, China is making concerted efforts on all fronts to take the maximum advantage of its entry into the WTO.

China's Bleak Economic Picture

The potential and promise of the Chinese El Dorado is spellbinding but the murkier side is well-hidden.

Educational Services

Managing trade in educational services is an important issue for India, and much homework needs to be done before any commitments are made at the negotiating table under WTO's General Agreement on Trade in Services. While making specific proposals, India must also make adequate use of the safeguards provided in GATS to protect its own national interests.

Competitiveness through Privatisation

At a recent meet in Mumbai highlighting the disinvestment route taken by several countries in the developing world, Italian trade delegates to these countries emphasised the role of privatisation in opening up the economy as well as in helping the government raise resources.

Trade Facilitation: A Singapore Issue Knocking at WTO's Door

Trade facilitation is a Singapore issue that has been knocking at WTO's door for quite some time now. It is also an issue that has very wide ramifications and involves numerous stakeholders, its implications not being limited to any particular trade or industry. Trade facilitation on its own needs the attention of all stakeholders irrespective of what stance we ultimately adopt at the WTO negotiations. Therefore, in-depth examination of the issue, which will involve considerable time and detailed study, should be initiated urgently without waiting till we approach the next Ministerial at Mexico. The objective of this paper is to highlight the different aspects of the issue that need to be examined.

Duty Exemption and Remission Schemes

Under a fully WTO-compatible trade regime, to which India is committed, the only weapon available in normal circumstances to check imports which damage domestic industry is flexibility in fixation of customs duties subject to the committed bound rates. But as imports under the export-linked schemes are duty-free, a surge in such imports cannot be arrested through the tariff rate mechanism. It is necessary, therefore, to rationalise the duty exemption and remission schemes in the EXIM Policy 2002-07 to be announced shortly.

Social Clause in WTO

Although social clause as an issue related to international competition and trade has a rich history and has been pursued haltingly by the US ever since the pre-Tokyo GATT rounds, it is topical today because of the prospect of labour standards becoming a formal instrument of trade policy through incorporation in the rules-based WTO. What are the moral, economic and political cases for and against bringing a controversial social clause into the WTO rubric?

Food Security

Towards Hunger Free India: Agenda and Imperatives edited by M D Asthana and Pedro Madrano;
Manohar Publishers, New Delhi, 2001; pp liii+592, Rs 895

Legal Factors in TRIPS

To ensure that patent-abusive situations, such as the ones that occurred in South Africa, do not repeat themselves, member countries of the WTO must draft balanced domestic patent legislations based on a rational interpretation of the TRIPS text.

WTO and Environment

The report of the WTO Appellate Body in the dispute between Malaysia and the US over the restrictions on import into the US of shrimp and shrimp products represents a clear move away from the understanding that GATT/WTO rules shall not regulate process and production methods, i e, as opposed to product characteristics. The report not only tramples upon the sovereign rights of states to have their own environmental protection regimes, but also goes a long way to legitimise green protectionism. It further raises the issue of the place and function of the dispute settlement system in the WTO scheme of things. Unless important third world countries like India act to prevent the dispute settlement machinery from assuming an extraconstitutional role, their trade and development cause would suffer irredeemable damage.

Pages

Back to Top