The World Trade Organization (WTO) is an intergovernmental organization that is concerned with the regulation of international trade between nations. The WTO officially commenced on 1 January 1995 under the Marrakesh Agreement, signed by 123 nations on 15 April 1994, replacing the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT), which commenced in 1948. It is the largest international economic organization in the world.
The WTO deals with regulation of trade in goods, services and intellectual property between participating countries by providing a framework for negotiating trade agreements and a dispute resolution process aimed at enforcing participants' adherence to WTO agreements, which are signed by representatives of member governments and ratified by their parliaments The WTO prohibits discrimination between trading partners, but provides exceptions for environmental protection, national security, and other important goals. Trade-related disputes are resolved by independent judges at the WTO through a dispute resolution process.
Studies show that the WTO boosted trade, and that barriers to trade would be higher in the absence of the WTO. The WTO has highly influenced the text of trade agreements, as "nearly all recent [preferential trade agreements (PTAs)] reference the WTO explicitly, often dozens of times across multiple chapters... in many of these same PTAs we find that substantial portions of treaty language—sometime the majority of a chapter—is copied verbatim from a WTO agreement." The United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 10 also referenced WTO agreements as instruments of reducing inequality. Critics state that the benefits derived from WTO facilitated free trade are not shared equally with historical accounts of the outcomes of negotiations and/or data showing that the gap between the rich and the poor continues to widen.
WTO Law on Export Restrictions on Trade in Goods
Seek and you shall find
Kelly Kuan Shang
ISBN (softcover) : 9789462404144
ISBN (Epub) : 978946240431
The WTO Dispute Settlement System as a Legal Impediment to Iran’s Accession to the WTO
ISBN (softcover) : 9789462404137
ISBN (Epub) : 9789462404342
The Council of Europe
The Council of Europe (CoE) is an international organisation founded in the wake of World War II to uphold human rights, democracy and the rule of law in Europe. Founded in 1949, it has 47 member states, with a population of approximately 820 million, and operates with an annual budget of approximately 500 million euros.
The organisation is distinct from the 27-nation European Union (EU), although it is sometimes confused with it, partly because the EU has adopted the original European Flag which was created by the Council of Europe in 1955, as well as the European Anthem. No country has ever joined the EU without first belonging to the Council of Europe. The Council of Europe is an official United Nations Observer.
The Council of Europe cannot make binding laws, but it does have the power to enforce select international agreements reached by European states on various topics. The best known body of the Council of Europe is the European Court of Human Rights, which enforces the European Convention on Human Rights.
The Council's two statutory bodies are the Committee of Ministers, comprising the foreign ministers of each member state, and the Parliamentary Assembly, composed of members of the national parliaments of each member state. The Commissioner for Human Rights is an independent institution within the Council of Europe, mandated to promote awareness of and respect for human rights in the member states. The Secretary General heads the secretariat of the organisation. Other major CoE bodies include the European Directorate for the Quality of Medicines and the European Audiovisual Observatory.
The headquarters of the Council of Europe are in Strasbourg, France. English and French are its two official languages. The Committee of Ministers, the Parliamentary Assembly, and the Congress of the Council of Europe also use German, Italian, and Russian for some of their work.
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The United Nations
The United Nations (UN) is an intergovernmental organization that aims to maintain international peace and security, develop friendly relations among nations, achieve international cooperation, and be a centre for harmonizing the actions of nations. It is the largest, most familiar, most internationally represented and most powerful intergovernmental organization in the world. The UN is headquartered on international territory in New York City, with its other main offices in Geneva, Nairobi, Vienna, and The Hague.
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