The Crisis of the WTO and New Direction for Negotiation Strategies of Korea
Suh, Jin Kyo; Lee, Cheon-Kee; Lee, Jukwan; Kim, Jihyeon; Jung, Myeonghwa | June 2021
The WTO is facing a historical crisis. Its main functions ‒ namely, providing a negotiating forum, administrating WTO trade agreements and monitoring national trade policies, and resolving trade disputes ‒ have been significantly paralyzed. Since launching the Doha Development Round in 2001, the WTO has failed to produce meaningful outcomes to this day. Further, China’s entry into the WTO has neither opened up its economy, nor created a level playing field when it comes to potentially market-distorting subsidies. The surveillance of trade policies based on the Trade Policy Review Mechanism (TPRM), a fundamentally important activity running throughout the work of the WTO aimed at fostering transparency, is criticized for its lack of effectiveness. The Dispute Settlement Mechanism (DSM), once praised as the WTO’s “crown jewel,” is now on the verge of collapse due to the absence of an appeal court. Although the cause of the crisis is partly institutional, higher uncertainty is also a considerable problem aggravating the fate of the multilateral trading system. Such uncertainty comes from two factors: rising protectionism, and trade frictions between developed and developing countries including those between the United States and China. Meanwhile, the WTO also needs to respond to rapid structural changes in global trade. The center of the world’s trade is shifting towards trade in services. The development and spread of information and communication technology (ICT) are making it easier to supply services across borders. The regionalization or localization of global value chains (GVCs) continues and GVCs are shifting towards knowledgebase goods. Therefore, the WTO faces a historical challenge it is highly unlikely to survive without proper reflection on the new trends of global trade.
CitationSuh, Jin Kyo; Lee, Cheon-Kee; Lee, Jukwan; Kim, Jihyeon; Jung, Myeonghwa. 2021. The Crisis of the WTO and New Direction for Negotiation Strategies of Korea. © Korea Institute for International Economic Policy. http://hdl.handle.net/11540/13729.
Regional Trading Arrangements
Regional Trade Integration
Regional Economic Integration
Regional Development Bank
Access to markets
International trade law
Regional economic disparities
Regional economic blocs
Cumulative effects assessment
Human rights and globalizationShow allCollapse