image of Preface

At the heart of the World Trade Organization (WTO) is a set of rules that regulate trade between nations: a body of agreements which have been negotiated and signed by governments of most of the world’s trading nations, with the aim of promoting transparency, predictability and nondiscrimination in trading relations. These agreements, covering trade in goods, trade in services and trade-related aspects of intellectual property rights, help to define and inform the multiple roles of the WTO as an international, intergovernmental organization, in administering the provisions of these agreements, providing a forum for trade negotiations, handling trade disputes, monitoring national trade policies, providing technical assistance and capacity building for developing countries, and cooperating with other international organizations. Understanding these agreements and their practical, policy and legal contexts therefore provides significant insights into the WTO as an institution, its activities and international role, its partnerships with other organizations, and the way in which WTO member governments identify and pursue their national interests through this intergovernmental forum.

Related Topics: Intellectual property ; The WTO
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