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Monday October 29 week 8

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Global Development Studies
DEVS 230
Marc Epprecht

Monday October 29, Week 8 The Politics of the Global Trading Regime: WTO What is the WTO?  An international organization (public, not a company)  Emerged from ‘GATT foundations’ in 1995 through the Uruguay Round Negotiations of GATT  Emerges within the wider PWCR  Current negotiation round is the Doha ‘Development’ round, which has stalled now since it started in 2001.  Provides legal ‘ground rules’ for world trading negotiations  Aim is to help trade flow freely to reduce poverty What does it Do?  Unlike GATT, it is mandated to regulate global trade  Designed to uphold basic principles of free trade so that there are no back room deals, and that there is no discrimination  Three primary types of trade: goods, services, and intellectual property rights Structered Agency  Emphasizes the fact that agents act in circumstances not of their own making  Agency refers to the capacity to exert power, pursue a certain course of action  Structures provide constraints and opportunities for action, but are neither natural or neutral (eg laws are not neutral, they need to be contextualized) Sacred Tenet of Standard economic theory  Competitive free trade automatically benefits everyone (trade liberalization, etc)  It should be free of discriminatory trade measures (beggar-thy-neighbour) and tend toward more freedom (fewer/non tariff barriers), be predictable Comparative Advantage ‘Theory’  Focus on efficiency  In the real world: based on labour hours devoid of any skills or other characteristics  ‘perfect competition’  2 core principles aimed at facilitating comparative advantage: most- favoured nation (can’t grant a special favour to one nati
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