ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846
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Wrong on WTO

One of the most significant events scheduled to take place at the Fourth Ministerial Conference of the World Trade Organisation at Doha, Qatar, is the formal entry of China into the trade body, along with a few other nations. China is one of the world’s largest traders, capable of using its enormous imports to exert influence on foreign governments. Such a country has been campaigning hard to find its way into the WTO and has made remarkable concessions to the US and the European Union to obtain their agreement to its inclusion among WTO members. Indian politicians who demand that India should walk out of the WTO if the Doha meet launches a new round of trade talks ignoring India’s opposition to such a move would do well to ponder over the imperatives that drove China to yield the significant concessions that it has, in order to gain membership of the multilateral trade organisation. The simple fact is that multilateral rules, rule making and rule enforcement are of great help to countries that seek to gain from trade. In the absence of such rules and mechanisms to enforce them, countries would have to depend on bilateral deals. Apart from increasing transaction costs, bilateral dealings would also prove more iniquitous for India, whose share in world exports is all of 0.7 per cent, given the great disparity in economic size or trade volumes between India and its major trading partners.



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