The World Trade Organisation: A Brief Introduction

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The World Trade Organisation: A Brief Introduction

<p>The World Trade Organization, founded in 1995, is the world’s leading international trade institution. In this brief introduction, we will begin with a survey of the history of the WTO, from the

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The World Trade Organization, founded in 1995, is the world’s leading international trade institution. In this brief introduction, we will begin with a survey of the history of the WTO, from the creation in 1946 of its precursor institution, the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT), until today. We will then consider the membership, purpose and structures of the WTO, as well as the ways in which politics have shaped the origins, functioning and evolution of this powerful but controversial body. We will conclude with an examination of some recent objections to the WTO raised by various international leaders.


SUGGESTED READING


COURSE OUTLINE

  • Survey of the WTO’s development, from its precursor (the GATT) until today.
  • Overview of the membership, mandate and structures of the WTO.
  • Analysis of the politics that continue to influence the operations of the WTO.


PLANNED LEARNING OUTCOMES
By the end of this course, students should be able to:

  1. Understand the origins and development of the World Trade Organization.
  2. Comprehend the basic structure and functions of the WTO.
  3. Appreciate the role of politics in the operations of the WTO.