WTO: The Doha Agenda: The New Negotiations on World Trade

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Bloomsbury Academic, 2003 - Business & Economics - 122 pages

Following the Doha Ministerial Declaration in November 2001, the developed countries catapulted the WTO into an intensive, three-year round of further international trade negotiations. In this concise guide to the issues involved, B L Das, one of the world's leading authorities on the WTO, explains the new Work Programme which guides these negotiations. Far from constituting a 'development agenda' as the North touted it to be, he argues that issues of great importance to developing countries like textiles and balance of payments do not even figure in the Work Programme. Instead, it gives special attention to those areas which are of interest to the major developed countries, thereby further increasing the imbalance in the WTO system between North and South. Indeed the Work Programme looks set to benefit these countries who have given nothing in return to the developing countries.

The author explains and assesses the implications of each issue likely to figure in the new negotiations. These include not simply the major items that were the subject of the Uruguay Round - agriculture, services, subsidies, anti-dumping, regional trade arrangements, dispute settlement, industrial tariffs, intellectual property rights ; but also new areas (the so-called Singapore issues) like investment, competition policy, transparency in government procurement and trade facilitation as well as electronic commerce. He makes concrete policy proposals for the revision of the existing WTO Agreements in order to remedy their manifest defects from the point of view of protecting and improving the development prospects of those poor countries who are already so disadvantaged in the global economy.

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Contents

Introduction
3
Implementation Issues Para 12
6
Agriculture Paras 13 14
12
Copyright

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About the author (2003)

Bhagirath Lal Das served in the Indian Administrative Service, from where he retired as a Secretary to the Government of India. He was India's Ambassador and Permanent Representative to GATT and Deputy Permanent Representative to UNCTAD in Geneva. During that period he also functioned as Chairman of the GATT Council and of the GATT Contracting Parties. Later he spent five years with UNCTAD as its Director of International Trade Programmes.
Bhagirath Lal Das served in the Indian Administrative Service, from where he retired as a Secretary to the Government of India. He was India's Ambassador and Permanent Representative to GATT and Deputy Permanent Representative to UNCTAD in Geneva. During that period he also functioned as Chairman of the GATT Council and of the GATT Contracting Parties. Later he spent five years with UNCTAD as its Director of International Trade Programmes.

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