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Acronym: World Trade Organisation

The WTO is a 148-member trading bloc that creates internationally binding agreements between nations. The WTO is responsible for the TRIPS agreement. To be a member of the WTO countries must take actions to protect intellectual property. The WTO coordinates global trade planning talks and aims to create agreements within a global forum.

The WTO is basically a tool for the pro-corporate agenda that’s shaped many of the world’s trade policies and laws, since the early 20th century. When the WTO formed developing countries were promised major gains as industrialized countries were to lower and eventually eliminate tariffs. The problem with the WTO is that it is a global institution which is not held accountable.

Many of the small countries compete with the larger developed capitalist nations in certain industries like agriculture. These nations cannot compete, equally on world markets when the developed nations, in Europe or the USA, for example, are subsidizing their agricultural sector. Consequently, since the WTO came into being, poverty has increased and probably terrorism is more likely as a result. Some people believe that if the WTO was abandoned then the negative effects of globalization may be curbed.

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