The Doha Round and The WTO Cancun Ministerial Conference

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Case Details:

Case Code : ECOA122
Case Length : 27 Pages
Period : 2004
Organization : -
Pub Date : 2004
Teaching Note :Not Available
Countries : Global, Doha, Qatar
Industry : -

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This case study was compiled from published sources, and is intended to be used as a basis for class discussion. It is not intended to illustrate either effective or ineffective handling of a management situation. Nor is it a primary information source.

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In the early 2004, the multilateral trading institution, WTO (World Trade Organization) found itself at the crossroads. World trade had grown significantly in the past three decades. Even as more and more countries appreciated the importance of trade, disputes had also become frequent. WTO had been set up to resolve these disputes amicably and create an environment where trade could flourish. The Doha round launched in Qatar in November 2001, had set ambitious goals. It aimed at reducing trade-distorting farm support, slashing tariffs on farm goods and eliminating agricultural subsidies; cutting industrial tariffs, especially in areas that poor countries cared about, such as textiles and freeing up trade in services.

The Doha round also emphasized four new areas: competition, investment, and transparency in government procurement and trade facilitation. These four new areas were referred to as the "Singapore issues" after the WTO meeting at which they first came up for discussion.

From the start, countries disowned big parts of the Doha agenda. The European Union denied it had ever promised to remove export subsidies. Many poor countries took a hard line against the Singapore issues...

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