Sie sind auf Seite 1von 2

World trade organization

World trade organization (WTO) is an organization that deals with the rules of trade between nations at the global or near-global level. The WTO has numerous roles. It is an organization for liberalizing trade. Its a forum for governments to negotiate trade agreements. Its also a place for them to settle trade disputes. The WTO agreements are lengthy and complex. Its because they represent legal texts that are covering a wide range of activities, such as: agriculture, banking, textiles and clothing, government purchases, industrial standards and product safety, intellectual property, and much more. But the foundation of the multilateral trading system is based on a number of simple, fundamental principles that are common for all WTO agreements. These principles include: -trade without discrimination, -freer trade, gradually, through negotiations, -promoting fair competition, and -encouraging development and economic reform. Trade without discrimination can be split into two additional principles: 1. Most-favored nation (MNF), or treating other people equally. Under the WTO agreements, countries cannot normally discriminate between their trading partners. If we grant someone a special favour (such as lower customs duty rate for one of their products), we have to do the same for all other WTO members. Most-favored sounds like a contradiction because it suggests special treatment. But in the WTO it actually means non-discrimination- treating virtually everyone with respect. MFN principle is the first article of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT). This agreement governs trade in goods. MNF is also a priority in the General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS) and the Agreement on TradeRelated Aspects of intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS). Together, those three agreements cover all three main areas of trade handled but the WTO. MNF principle is handled slightly differently in each agreement, and some exceptions are allowed. For example, countries can set up a free trade agreement that applies only to the goods traded within the group- discriminating against goods from outside. Or they can give developing countries special access to their markets. But these exemptions are only permitted under strict conditions. In general, MNF means that every time a country lowers trade barriers or opens up a market, it has to do for the same goods or services from all its trading partners. 2. National treatment, or treating foreigners and locals equally. Imported and locally-produced goods should be treated equally- at least after the foreign goods have entered the market. The same should apply to foreign and domestic services, and to foreign and local trademarks, copyrights and patents. The principle of national treatment is also a part of the three main WTO agreements (GATT, GATS and TRIPS). This treatment only applies once a product, service or item of intellectual property has entered the market. Therefore, charging duty on an import does not represent the violation of national treatment.

The Intellectual property rights were introduced into the multilateral trading system for the first time in the WTOs Agreement on Trade-Related aspects of intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS). These rights are given to creators in order to prevent others from using their inventions, designs or other creations. Creators also use these rights to negotiate payment in return for others using their intellectual property. Types of intellectual property are: -copyright and related rights, -trademarks, including service marks, -geographical indications, -industrial designs, -patents, -Layout-designs (topographies) of integrated circuits, and - Undisclosed information, including trade secrets. The WTOs TRIPS Agreement is an attempt to even out the way intellectual property rights are protected around the world, and to bring them under common international rules. It establishes minimum levels of protection that each government has to give to the intellectual property of fellow WTO members. The TRIPS Agreement covers five broad issues: 1) how basic principles of the trading system and other international intellectual property agreements should be applied, 2) how to give adequate protection to intellectual property rights, 3) how countries should enforce those rights adequately in their own territories, 4)how to settle disputes on intellectual property between members of the WTO, and 5) special transitional arrangements during the period when the new system is being introduced.