Recently trade agreements out of WTO’s oversight and mandate are bring negotiated, such as Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership, Trans Pacific Partnership.
Countries are renegotiating trade agreements among themselves which have provisions not normally included in WTO agreements for example NAFTA (North American Free Trade Agreement) has been modified to USMCA (United States Mexico Canada Agreement) .
Countries are preferring bilateral trade agreements rather than trading under global mandate of WTO.
WTO is facing criticism:
- WTO has been criticized for preferring interests of MNC’s over poor groups like farmers and labours.
- Developed countries are cornering developing countries on several issues, many developed countries are exploiting poor African countries and South American countries and WTO has not been able to do anything.
- China is WTO member, but still openly flouted IPR, labour provisions apart from its usual currency manipulations tactic.
- Doha agreement is being sidelined and new issues like e-commerce are being brought to discussion.
WTO has been quite successful in promoting global trade, however time has come for its comprehensive reforms.