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WTO Accessions and Trade Multilateralism

Case Studies and Lessons from the WTO at Twenty

By Uri Dadush and Chiedu Osakwe

This volume of essays offers critical readings on how WTO accession negotiations have expanded the reach of the multilateral trading system not only geographically but also conceptually, clarifying disciplines and pointing the way to their further strengthening in future negotiations. Members who have acceded since the WTO was established now account for 20 percent of total WTO membership. In the age of globalization there is an increased need for a universal system of trade rules. Accession negotiations have been used by governments as an instrument for domestic reforms, and one lesson from the accession process is that there are contexts that lead multilateral trade negotiations to successful outcomes even in the complex and multipolar twenty-first-century economic environment.

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