WTO team to visit Dominica

wtoA two-member team from the World Trade Organization (WTO) arrives in Dominica over the weekend to begin a Trade Policy Review (TPR).

The areas under review are; the economic environment (structure of the economy, employment and output); trade and investment framework (foreign investment regime, preferential arrangements and agreements); trade policy and practices by measure (measures directly affecting exports and imports); trade policy by sector (agriculture, manufacturing, services).

The TPR was introduced into the WTO General Agreement on Tariff and Trade in 1989 following the mid -term review of the Uruguay round of negotiations.

It is now a permanent fixture in the WTO Multilateral Trade Arrangement called the WTO Trade Policy Review Mechanism. This is championed by the Trade Policy Review Division of the WTO.

The TPR ensures predictability and respect for trade rules which stands to benefit all traders. The frequency of the review is contingent on the member state’s share of world trade. The four biggest traders, including the United States and the European Union, undergo a TPR every two years, the sixteen developed countries every four years and the rest of the developing WTO member states including includes the OECS, every six years.

The WTO is the only international organization dealing with the global rules of trade between nations. Its main function is to ensure that trade flows as smoothly, predictably and freely as possible.

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6 Comments

  1. November 11, 2013

    The WTO is a vehicle through which rules are set for small countries to obey and large countries to disregard when inconvenient. Witness the lack of consequence to the U.S. for its anti-competitive behaviour on online gaming. Yes, Antigua won in a WTO ruling, but what good does has it really done them?

  2. Cerberus
    November 11, 2013

    I have to take issue with the comments by Nmc. With regard to exports to Europe our banana farmers are subject to the same external conditions as those in the Dominican Republic. In addition, our farmers do receive substantial indirect financial support as any income from farming is tax exempt (not to mention subsidized inputs and tax concessions on vehicles).
    At the same time, whereas banana exports from the Dominican Republic to Europe increased from 50,000 tonnes in 2000 to over 300,000 in 2012 our exports to the same market declined from 28,800 tonnes in 2000 to barely 2,000 tonnes at present and “The Sun” reports today that unless we can ship 45 tonnes/week by January the U.K. market may withdraw its custom altogether.
    It is clear hat our decline cannot not be solely contributed to WTO regulations or the relatively recent arrival of black sikatoka.

  3. Nmc
    November 10, 2013

    Isn’t that the same WTO which ruled against our preferential Status of bananas on the European Market, which was a minuscule percentage of World Trade, ie about 3% of the Windward Islands Production.They had no sympathy for the poor farmers of the Caribbean.They dictated no Subsidies for Farmers in the underdevelop countries but they maintain subsidies for their farmers in the develop countries like the US and Europe.

  4. AROUND
    November 10, 2013

    you all see what WTO is.The WTO is the only international organization dealing with the global rules of trade between nations. Its main function is to ensure that trade flows as smoothly, predictably and freely as possible.What they not telling us is how they going and help us suffer more as third world countries.world economic spies visiting to see how miserable our lives are and how they can help it get worst.

  5. Manufacturing
    November 9, 2013

    Wow, when we’re refusing to use our local resources to our benefits, it’s quite surprising that people are demanding that the government reduce import duties on rubbish that is being dumped into Dominica. Furthermore, it’s this same rubbish that leading to a negative balance of trade while our fruits go to waste year after year. Not to mention the health hazard it has spurred in recent times.

    EU and the USA adopt protectionist measures to protect their economies and ask the world to allow their goods to enter international markets while their farmers and enterprises benefit from subsidies. This dependency of ours is deeper than I thought. It’s engrained in the thinking of our people and needs to be eradicated.

  6. Malatete
    November 9, 2013

    This is a very welcome visit. I hope this delegation closely examines the restrictions and tariffs we are applying, even within Caricom to prevent free trade, at the expense of consumers. It can not be that a world-brand fizzy drink, produced in St. Lucia and retailing there at $6.33 costs between 8.43 and $8.99 in Dominica, for example. It also high time we start to avail ourselves of the free access to European markets under the EPA agreement and reciprocate. Europe (the EU) is one of our largest benefactors, yet we continue to discriminate against their goods and services. We must open up, become a real world player and reduce restrictions and punitive taxes, in particular import duties, which drive up our cost of living and restrict choice.Cooperation cannot never be a one-way street.

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