The World Trade Report 2006 is the fourth in a series launched in 2002. As in previous years, the present Report has taken up a current issue in trade policy. This year we have looked at subsidies. The contribution we hope to make with these Reports is to aid understanding of complex trade policy issues facing governments. This is not intended primarily as a prescriptive Report, but rather as an invitation to deeper reflection, and it is aimed not just at policy-makers but also the public they represent and the individuals and organizations that actively seek to influence government policies. In addition to the core topic, the Report also takes a brief look at recent developments in trade and discusses some salient features of recent trade developments or a particular aspect of trade. This year, the Report looks briefly at trade in textiles and clothing, flows of international receipts and payments of royalties and license fees, trends in the trade of least-developed countries, and the impact of natural disasters and terrorist acts on international trade flows.

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