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What the Developing Countries Want from the WTO

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Author Info

  • McCalla, Alex F.

Abstract

There is a very strong consensus among economists that developing countries have the most to gain from movements towards freer trade under the WTO. But the Seattle WTO meeting was suspended in part because of vocal NGOs who charged that free trade and globalization were not in poor countriesÂ’ interests. This paper makes three points. First, developing countries do have much to gain from general trade liberalization. Trade expansion is positively linked to growth. Second, agricultural trade liberalization offers even greater gains than liberalization in other sectors because of the heavy dominance of agriculture in poor countriesÂ’ economies. Third, not all developing countries are poor, food-deficit, importing countries. They are a heterogeneous group and many are agricultural exporters. An open-economy development strategy has historically paid off for developing countries and is still the best bet for the future. Therefore, a WTO agreement which provides a fair, open, transparent, and rules-based international trading environment is absolutely critical to reducing poverty in these countries. They need access to markets and protection from predatory practices by large rich countries. The WTO is the best game in town.

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File URL: http://purl.umn.edu/23863
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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Estey Centre for Law and Economics in International Trade in its journal Estey Centre Journal of International Law and Trade Policy.

Volume (Year): 02 (2001)
Issue (Month): 1 ()
Pages:

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Handle: RePEc:ags:ecjilt:23863

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Related research

Keywords: developing countries; NGOs; non-trade issues; open trade regimes; International Relations/Trade;

References

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  1. Meilke, Karl D., 2000. "What Went Wrong In Seattle?," CATRN Papers 12887, Canadian Agri-Food Trade Research Network.
  2. Huff, Karen, 2000. "Developing Country Concerns And Multilateral Trade Negotiations," CATRN Papers 12892, Canadian Agri-Food Trade Research Network.
  3. Anderson, Kym & Hoekman, Bernard & Strutt, Anna, 2001. "Agriculture and the WTO: Next Steps," Review of International Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 9(2), pages 192-214, May.
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Cited by:
  1. Ng, Francis & Aksoy, M. Ataman, 2008. "Who are the net food importing countries ?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4457, The World Bank.
  2. Francis Ng & M.Ataman Aksoy, 2013. "Who Are the Net Food Importing Countries?," Working Papers 2013/1, Turkish Economic Association.

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