Small Firms in Developing Countries: Connecting to the Global Economy

Article excerpt

Business perspectives

* Dispute settlement

Industries initiate dispute claims.

* Trade Policy Review Mechanism

Good source of marketing information.

* Monitoring committees and bodies

Note especially the Textiles Monitoring Body which supervises implementation of the Agreement on Textiles and Clothing until 31.12.2004.

* Fora for negotiations

Opportunity to influence trade areas: electronic commerce, environment, government procurement, competition policy, investment and trade facilitation.

The World Trade Organization oversees implementation of Multilateral Agreements on goods, services and intellectual property; acts as a forum for negotiations among countries to further liberalize trade; and provides a mechanism to settle trade disputes among member countries. Decisions on important matters under its competence are taken at Ministerial Conferences, which meet at least once every two years.

Making the Most of the World Trading System

Here are some ways for firms in developing and transition economies to take advantage of the system, in tandem with business groups and government bodies.

* Spot new market opportunities when countries begin to implement WTO regulations (such as tariff reductions in target markets).

* Obtain up-to-date, economic policy insights for your markets, through country reports from WTO trade policy reviews.

* Bring cases of unfair treatment to your government's attention to initiate dispute settlement. …

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