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

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Multilevel Failure of WTO Ministerial at Buenos Aires

The World Trade Organization’s 11th Ministerial Conference at Buenos Aires witnessed multiple failures on all fronts. The United States blocked the only mandated outcome on the permanent solution for public stockholding programmes for food security at the meeting, a priority issue for India and other developing countries. But the chair of the meeting and the WTO director general claimed gains from controversial new plurilateral initiatives announced by groups of countries that seek to wipe out the unfulfilled Doha multilateral trade negotiations.

What Happened at Nairobi and Why

The 10th ministerial of the World Trade Organization at Nairobi in December 2015 marked a turning point in bringing the organisation back into the hegemonic grip of the trans-Atlantic powers. Despite New Delhi's demands being summarily rejected by the United States and the European Union, India became a party to the final Nairobi Ministerial Declaration. The NMD succeeded in whittling away the previous developmental gains of the Doha Round of negotiations. Why did India and its minister for commerce act in this manner at Nairobi?

On a Wild Goose Chase for Black Money in Switzerland

The noisy call to "bring back black money" from Swiss bank accounts of Indians ignores the larger and growing deployment of illegal wealth in financial centres like Dubai. It is also overlooked that such money is rarely kept in the bank accounts of individuals but is held by trusts which make investments and whose beneficial owners are hidden from public gaze. Is this a serious effort to end tax evasion and capital flight or is it a public drama in which everyone knows no one is serious?

Doha Round

After having got developing and least developed countries to assent to a binding trade facilitation agreement at the 2013 ministerial meeting of the World Trade Organisation in Bali on the understanding that their bread-and-butter issues in agriculture and development would be addressed in the Doha Round negotiations, the US and the European Union do not seem to be in a mood to take things further. The post-Bali narrative indicates that a new agenda that does little to address distortions in the global trading system is about to be foisted on members when the Doha Round resumes.

What Happened at the Bali WTO Meet and Why

The food security issue was not the only one of importance at the Bali ministerial meeting of the World Trade Organisation; the "Bali package" contained a number of decisions of far-reaching importance for India, other developing countries and possibly for the future of multilateral trade organisations. A report and analysis of the run-up to the meet and what happened at the Indonesian resort island.

WTO: Another Attempt at Fighting Irrelevance

The eighth ministerial of the World Trade Organisation was on the surface an inconsequential meeting of an organisation fighting a descent into irrelevance. But there were attempts by the powerful economies to craft a plurilateral approach that would keep out the majority of WTO member countries.

Doha Round: Going, Going, Gone

Despite continuing half-hearted attempts to "conclude" the decade-long Doha Round of trade talks under the World Trade Organisation, the round is effectively dead though no country wants to say so. There have been many guilty of refusing to work out a fair package for all countries, but none are more responsible than the United States and the head of the organisation.

Climate Finance: Already in Trouble

Climate finance or additional resources for developing countries to fight global warming was an integral element of the Copenhagen Accord drawn up at the climate summit in December 2009. But preparatory meetings for the next round of climate negotiations indicate that the sinners of climate change have already begun to backtrack.
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