Conclusion of Implementation Discussions for Year 2000: Extremely Disappointing for Developing Countries

vieuxcmaq, Saturday, January 20, 2001 - 12:00

Chakravarthi Raghava (

Dear friends and colleagues

Attached below is an important article by Chakravarthi Raghavan on the proceedings of the WTO General Council Special Session meeting held on 14-15 December 2000 on the subject of "implementation issues."

"Implementation issues" is a code for the demands made by developing countries to resolve the inequities, imbalances and problems arising from implementation of the WTO Agreements. They include the problems facing developing countries from having To implement their obligations, and the lack of implementation By developed countries of their obligations (thereby depriving Developing countries of their benefits).

Before and at Seattle, developing countries had put forward many proposals on this issue. The lack of seriousness of major developed countries in responding to these requests led to disillusionment of developing countries with the WTO process and was a major cause of the breakdown of the Seattle talks.

As part of "confidence building measures" after Seattle, the WTO decided to hold special sessions of the General Council to consider the implementation issues put forward by developing countries. During the year 2000 several meetings were held. Again, the lack of positive response from developed countries was disappointing to developing countries.

At the final meeting on implementation, held before the Christmas break, the WTO adopted a "decision" on implementation issues, which concluded the work for year 2000 on this set of issues.

The article below provides an account and an analysis of this WTO decision, and of the debate in the WTO during the 14-15 December special session. It is the most detailed account of what transpired at this crucial meeting on an issue of such great significance to developing countries and indeed to the whole WTO system.

The article is by the Chief Editor of the South-North Development Monitor (SUNS), C. Raghavan. It is compiled from two articles published in the SUNS nos. 4805 and 4806 on 15 and 18 December 2000 respectively.

It shows how extremely disappointed the delegations of many developing countries were with the decision, which contained nothing of operational gain for them. There has thus been little progress since Seattle in resolving the implementation problems facing developing countries.

We hope you find this document useful to your work. It is being sent to you as a service by TWN and SUNS.

The SUNS is a daily bulletin produced in Geneva that provides information and analyses on development issues, with a special focus on the WTO. Please visit the SUNS website, for more infor and subs details. Please do not recirculate or publish the document below without authorisation. For that, you can also contact Mr Raghavan via email at

You can also visit the Third World Network website for more information on the WTO and many other

With best wishes
Martin Khor. Director Third World Network

TWN- Third World Network
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