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The World Trade Organization (WTO) Seattle Ministerial Conference

Description: On November 30th to December 3rd, 1999, the highest decision-making body of the World Trade Organization (WTO), called the Ministerial Conference, will meet in Seattle to make broad policy decisions. The key issue for the trade ministers attending the meeting will be to decide on the structure and topics for the agenda of a new round of multilateral trade negotiations. Countries have committed to discuss agriculture and services trade in the new round. Other items that have been proposed for inclusion in the new round or for earlier consideration include tariff reductions, concessions for developing countries, labor issues and the environment, and the WTO decision-making process. Major labor, environmental, and consumer interest groups are expected to be present in Seattle to argue for more consideration of workers' rights and the environment within the WTO. This report provides a summary background on preparations for the Ministerial and related issues of congressional interest.
Date: November 19, 1999
Creator: Sek, Lenore
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

World Trade Organization: Institutional Issues and Dispute Settlement

Description: Among the results of the Uruguay Round (UR) of Multilateral Trade Negotiations conducted under the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) are institutions to administer the trade obligations contained in the UR agreements and to provide venues for further negotiation and discussion of these and possibly future trade agreements. The two primary institutional instruments are the World Trade Organization (WTO) and the dispute settlement procedures set forth in the Dispute Settlement Understanding (DSU).
Date: August 3, 1994
Creator: Grimmett, Jeanne J.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

World Trade Organization Negotiations: The Doha Development Agenda

Description: On November 9-14, 2001, trade ministers from WTO countries met in Doha, Qatar for their fourth Ministerial Conference. At that meeting, they agreed to a work program for a new round of multilateral trade negotiations to conclude by January 1, 2005. The work program folds on-going negotiations on agriculture and services into a broader agenda that includes industrial tariffs, topics of interest to developing countries, changes in WTO rules, and other provisions. Because of the influence that developing countries had in setting the work program, the round has become known as the Doha Development Agenda. Agriculture has been the linchpin in the Doha Development Agenda. U.S. goals were substantial reduction of trade-distorting domestic support; elimination of export subsidies, and improved market access. Industrial trade barriers and services are other market access topics in the negotiations.
Date: August 6, 2004
Creator: Sek, Lenore
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Environment and the World Trade Organization (WTO) at Seattle: Issues and Concerns

Description: This meeting of the decision making body of the WTO was expected to make decisions that would lead to another round of negotiations on a wide variety of trade rules and related issues. Although the United States continues to assert the necessity of pursuing the twin goals of free trade and environmental protection and to argue that these need not be in conflict, controversy remains over how the multilateral trading system should address the specifics of environmental issues.
Date: December 21, 1999
Creator: Fletcher, Susan R.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

WTO Doha Round: Agricultural Negotiating Proposals

Description: The pace of negotiations in the Doha Round of multilateral trade negotiations has quickened as the mid-December Hong Kong Ministerial Conference of the World Trade Organization (WTO) approaches. At Hong Kong, WTO member countries are expected to reach agreements on specific measures (known as modalities) to expand global trade in agricultural and industrial products and services and set the stage for intensive negotiations that would take place during 2006. Despite intense negotiations, agreements on modalities, especially for agriculture, have eluded negotiators. This report provides background information on the WTO, the Doha Round, the key negotiating groups, and a schedule of historical and upcoming events relevant to the agricultural negotiations; reviews the agreements reached in the July 2004 framework and identifies issues that remain to be resolved by the Hong Kong Ministerial in December; discusses and compares the major agricultural negotiating proposals; and discusses the potential effects of an agricultural agreement on U.S. farm policy.
Date: November 9, 2005
Creator: Hanrahan, Charles E. & Schnepf, Randy
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

WTO Decisions and Their Effect on U.S. Law

Description: Congress has comprehensively dealt with the legal effect of World Trade Organization (WTO) agreements and dispute settlement results in the United States in the Uruguay Round Agreements Act (URAA), P.L. 103-465, which provides that domestic law prevails over conflicting provisions of WTO agreements and prohibits private remedies based on alleged violations of these agreements. As a result, WTO agreements and adopted WTO rulings in conflict with federal law do not have domestic legal effect unless and until Congress or the Executive Branch, as the case may be, takes action to modify or remove the statute, regulation, or regulatory practice at issue. Violative state laws may be withdrawn by the state or, in rare circumstances, invalidated through legal action by the federal government. In addition, the URAA places requirements on federal regulatory action taken to implement WTO decisions and contains provisions specific to the implementation of dispute settlement panel and appellate reports that fault U.S. actions in trade remedy proceedings.
Date: May 24, 2005
Creator: Grimmett, Jeanne J.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

WTO Doha Round: The Agricultural Negotiations

Description: The pace of negotiations in the Doha Round of multilateral trade negotiations quickened in October 2005 as the December Hong Kong Ministerial Conference of the World Trade Organization (WTO) approached. At Hong Kong, however, while WTO members agreed on a broad outline of negotiating objectives for further liberalizing global trade in agriculture, industry and services, they made only limited progress in determining precise numerical formulas (known as modalities) for meeting the Round’s aims. WTO members agreed to intensify efforts to reach agreement on modalities and conclude Doha Round negotiations by the end of 2006. This report assesses the current status of agricultural negotiations in the Doha Round; traces the developments leading up to the Hong Kong Ministerial; examines the major agricultural negotiating proposals; discusses the potential effects of a successful Doha Round agreement on global trade, income, U.S. farm policy, and U.S. agriculture; and provides background on the WTO, the Doha Round, the key negotiating groups, and a schedule of historical and upcoming events relevant to the agricultural negotiations.
Date: January 12, 2006
Creator: Hanrahan, Charles E. & Schnepf, Randy
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

World Trade Organization: Ensuring China's Compliance Requires a Sustained and Multifaceted Approach

Description: Testimony issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "China's accession to the World Trade Organization (WTO) in December 2001 created substantial opportunities for U.S. companies seeking to expand into China's market. In joining the WTO, China agreed to liberalize its trade regime and open its markets to foreign goods and services. However, the U.S. government has become concerned about ensuring that China honors its commitments to offer a more predictable environment for trade. GAO was asked to describe (1) the monitoring of compliance challenges associated with the scope and complexity of China's WTO commitments and (2) the efforts to date of the key players involved in ensuring China's compliance: the executive branch, Congress, the private sector, the WTO and its other members. GAO's observations are based on its prior analysis of China's WTO commitments, its previous survey of and interviews with private sector representatives, and its examination of first-year efforts to ensure China's WTO compliance."
Date: October 30, 2003
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

World Trade Organization: U.S. Experience in Dispute Settlement System: The First Five Years

Description: Testimony issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO discussed the World Trade Organization's (WTO) dispute settlement system, focusing on: (1) how WTO members have used the new dispute settlement system; and (2) the impact of these cases on foreign trade practices and U.S. laws and regulations, and their overall commercial effects."
Date: June 20, 2000
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

World Trade Organization: Seattle Ministerial: Outcomes and Lessons Learned

Description: Testimony issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO discussed the World Trade Organization's (WTO) 1999 ministerial conference, focusing on the: (1) outcome of the ministerial conference; (2) factors contributing to the outcome; and (3) the lessons learned from the meeting."
Date: February 8, 2000
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

World Trade Organization: Observations on China's Rule of Law Reforms

Description: Testimony issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "This testimony describes China's development of rule of law practices related to the commitments China made to the World Trade Organization (WTO), which it joined in November 2001. When China joined the WTO, it agreed that its legal measures would be consistent with its WTO obligations. GAO found 60 commitments that specifically obligate China to enact, repeal, or modify trade-related laws or regulations. In addition, China has made a substantial number of other WTO commitments related to the rule of law in transparency, judicial review, uniform enforcement of laws, and nondiscriminatory treatment. Chinese government officials described how their efforts for reform go beyond China's WTO commitments and include broad reforms of laws and regulations at the national and provincial levels, as well as reforms of judicial and administrative procedures. However, Chinese officials acknowledged the challenges they face in completing the necessary reforms and identified the need for outside training assistance. According to GAO's survey, U.S. businesses in China consider rule of law-related WTO commitments to be important, especially the consistent application of laws, regulations, and practices in China, and enforcement of intellectual property rights. However, a majority of businesses answering the survey anticipated that these rule of law commitments would be difficult for the Chinese to implement, and they identified some concerns over specific implementation issues."
Date: June 6, 2002
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

World Trade Organization: Seattle Ministerial: Outcomes and Lessons Learned

Description: Testimony issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO discussed the World Trade Organization's (WTO) 1999 ministerial conference, focusing on the: (1) outcome of the ministerial conference; (2) factors contributing to the outcome; and (3) the lessons learned from the meeting."
Date: February 10, 2000
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

World Trade Organization Negotiations: The Doha Development Agenda

Description: This report discusses the World Trade Organization (WTO) Doha Round of multilateral trade negotiations, begun in November 2001, which has entered its 11th year. The report includes background on Doha and the significance fo the negotiations as well as a breakdown of issues on the Doha agenda and the role of the Congress.
Date: December 12, 2011
Creator: Fergusson, Ian F.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The GATT and the WTO: An Overview

Description: The Uruguay Round Agreement reduced tariffs, brought services, intellectual property, and agriculture under the discipline of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade, and established the World Trade Organization. Multilateral trade issues for the future include continuing services negotiations, the relationship of the environment and labor standards to trade, and investment and competition policy.
Date: March 27, 1995
Creator: Wilson, Arlene
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

IMF and World Bank: U.S. Contributions and Agency Budgets

Description: This paper shows how much the United States has contributed to these international agencies in recent years. It also shows how much the international agencies budget (and the source of those funds) for their administrative expenses and their operational budgets. This report will be updated periodically.
Date: December 9, 1999
Creator: Sanford, Jonathan E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Free Trade Agreements and the WTO Exceptions

Description: World Trade Organization (WTO) Members must grant immediate and unconditional most-favored-nation (MFN) treatment to the products of other Members with respect to tariffs and other trade matters. Free trade agreements (FTA) are facially inconsistent with this obligation because they grant countries who are party to the agreement the ability to receive more favorable trade benefits than those extended to other trading partners. Due to the prevailing view that such arrangements are trade enhancing, Article XXIV of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) contains a specific exception for FTAs. The growing number of regional trade agreements, however, has made it difficult for the WTO to efficiently monitor the consistency of FTAs with the provided exemption. This report examines this issue.
Date: September 22, 2004
Creator: Grimmett, Jeanne J. & Tatelman, Todd B.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

World Trade Organization: Global Trade Talks Back on Track, but Considerable Work Needed to Fulfill Ambitious Objectives

Description: A letter report issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "The outcome of ongoing World Trade Organization (WTO) negotiations is vital to the U.S. economy, because trade with WTO members accounts for about one-fifth of the U.S. gross domestic product. The current round of trade negotiations--called the Doha Round--was supposed to end by January 2005 with agreement on the key issues of agriculture, industrial market access, services, and to strengthen the trading system's contribution to economic development. Failure to reach any agreement at the last WTO ministerial meeting in Cancun, Mexico, in September 2003, put the talks behind schedule and threatened the outcome; however, talks resumed in 2004, and a new ministerial conference will convene in Hong Kong in December 2005. In light of these events, and with the impending renewal decision on U.S. Trade Promotion Authority, which streamlines the process by which Congress approves trade agreements, GAO was asked to assess (1) the overall status of the Doha Round negotiations, (2) progress on key negotiating issues, and (3) factors affecting progress toward concluding the negotiations."
Date: May 31, 2005
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

World Trade Organization: U.S. Experience to Date in Dispute Settlement System

Description: A briefing report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO provided information on the World Trade Organization's (WTO) dispute settlement system, focusing on: (1) how WTO members have used the new system, primarily on cases involving the United States; and (2) the impact of these cases on foreign trade practices and U.S. laws and regulations, and their overall commercial effects."
Date: June 14, 2000
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

World Trade Organization: Congress Faces Key Decisions as Efforts to Reach Doha Agreement Intensify

Description: A letter report issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "President Bush has identified the success of global trade talks launched in Doha, Qatar, in November 2001 as one of the United States' top trade policy priorities. Known as the Doha Development Agenda, the talks are an important means of spurring global growth and development. Completing the talks in 2006 was considered essential for an agreement to qualify for streamlined congressional consideration under the U.S. Trade Promotion Authority. However, the talks collapsed in late July 2006 in the face of wide differences over the extent of agricultural reform and how best to promote economic development in poor countries. Efforts to break the deadlock continue. Given the tenuous state of this central plank of U.S. trade policy, GAO updated its series of prior reports. In this report, we assess (1) the overall status of the Doha Round negotiations now and the progress that had been made prior to and since the breakdown of the talks, (2) the substantive divisions among key World Trade Organization (WTO) members that led to an environment of deadlock and the eventual suspension of the negotiations, and (3) the possible economic and other ramifications if the round is not concluded satisfactorily."
Date: March 5, 2007
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

World Trade Organization: U.S. Companies' Views on China's Implementation of Its Commitments

Description: A letter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "As the second largest source of foreign direct investment in China, U.S. companies continue their keen interest in China's implementation of its World Trade Organization (WTO) commitments. China's 2001 WTO commitments include specific pledges to increase market access, liberalize foreign investment, continue fundamental market reforms, and improve the rule of law. In 2002, GAO reported on selected U.S. companies' views, finding that many commitment areas, particularly those related to rule of law, were important to U.S. companies. GAO also found that company representatives expected China's reforms would have a positive impact on their business operations but expected some difficulties during implementation. In 2003, GAO continued to analyze companies' views about (1) the extent to which China has implemented its WTO commitments and (2) the impact of China's implementation of its WTO commitments on U.S. companies' business operations. GAO collected the views of representatives from 82 U.S. companies with a presence in China. GAO focused on companies in the agriculture, banking, machinery, and pharmaceutical industries. Results reflect a response rate of 60 percent of the study population. These responses may not reflect the views of all U.S. companies with activities in China."
Date: March 24, 2004
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

World Trade Organization: Limited Progress at Hong Kong Ministerial Clouds Prospects for Doha Agreement

Description: A letter report issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "U.S. officials often call the World Trade Organization's (WTO) Doha Development Agenda or "Round" of global trade talks, launched in Doha, Qatar, in November 2001, a "once in a generation opportunity" to expand trade. President Bush has identified their success as his administration's top trade priority. Due to various U.S. notification and consultation requirements, concluding the negotiations in 2006 is essential for a Doha agreement to qualify for congressional consideration under U.S. Trade Promotion Authority (TPA), which expires July 1, 2007. A ministerial meeting among the WTO's 149 members was held on December 13-18, 2005, in Hong Kong, China, to make decisions needed to advance the talks. Given the importance of the WTO Doha Round to the United States, GAO was asked to provide an update on the status of the negotiations. In this report, the latest in a series on the negotiations, we (1) provide the status of the Doha negotiations on the eve of the Hong Kong ministerial, (2) review the outcome of the Hong Kong ministerial, and (3) discuss the prospects for concluding the Doha Round before TPA expires in July 2007."
Date: April 26, 2006
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

World Trade Organization: China's Membership Status and Normal Trade Relations Issues

Description: A letter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "GAO provided information on efforts to grant China membership in the World Trade Organization (WTO), focusing on: (1) the status of negotiations for China to join WTO; (2) the results of the negotiations as compared to U.S. objectives for these negotiations; and (3) trade and legal considerations about granting China permanent normal trade relations status."
Date: March 17, 2000
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department