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The WTO and Global Governance

Future Directions

Edited by Gary P. Sampson

The World Trade Organization (WTO) is mandated by governments to pursue full employment, a steady growth in real income, and higher standards of living for its 150-plus member countries. Its role is also to ensure the optimal use of the world’s resources in accordance with sustainable development. As a result, the WTO has greatly extended its reach into nontraditional areas of trade policy, even though it is only part of a more global structure of international agreements with overlapping objectives and commitments. These commitments serve to shape domestic policy choices and constitute a principal feature of global governance. The WTO has a principal role to play in determining the borderline between domestic policy choices and international commitments. While the extended reach of the WTO is lauded by some as one of the greatest achievements in international cooperation, others see it as anathema and an encroachment on national sovereignty. What should be the role of the WTO in global governance? This book contains a variety of views. It explores the policy implications of WTO trade-related issues that overlap with other institutions and proposes future policy directions that could ensure coherent and consistent policies at the national and international levels.

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