General Agreement On Trade And Services

The General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS) is a World Trade Organization (WTO) treaty that came into force in January 1995 following the Uruguay Round negotiations. The treaty was created to extend the multilateral trading system to the services sector, just as the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) provides such a system for trade in goods. The GATS agreement has been criticized for replacing the authority of national law and justice with that of an GATS dispute resolution body that holds closed hearings. Spokespeople for WTO government members have an obligation to reject this criticism because they had previously pledged to recognize the benefits of the dominant trade principles of competition and “liberalization. The overall GATS framework consists of a preamble and 28 articles, followed by eight annexes, eight ministerial statements and decisions, and an “agreement” on financial services. Most annexes contain specific provisions for certain sectors, while declarations and decisions deal with general institutional issues such as the creation of working groups, work programmes, mandates, etc. The various national commitment plans and a consolidated European Union timetable are included in an “annex” to the framework. Several countries have also submitted lists of exceptions to the MFN, as well as their timetables. Finally, some instruments outside the GATS, such as the Dispute Settlement Agreement and some institutional provisions of the WTO agreement itself, are also considered part of the WTO package.

Some activist groups believe that GATS risks undermining the ability and authority of governments to regulate commercial activities within their own borders, which will lead to the flight of power from the commercial interests of citizens. In 2003, the GATSwatch network published a critical opinion, supported by more than 500 organizations in 60 countries. [1] At the same time, countries are not required to enter into international agreements such as the GATS. For countries that like to attract trade and investment, GATS adds a degree of transparency and legal predictability. Legal barriers to trade in services may have legitimate political reasons, but they can also be an effective instrument for large-scale corruption. [2] The General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS) is the first multilateral agreement on trade in services. It was negotiated in the last round of multilateral trade negotiations, the Uruguay Round, and came into force in 1995. The GATS provides a framework for the rules governing trade in services, sets a mechanism for countries to commit to liberalizing trade in services, and provides a mechanism for resolving disputes between countries. The interests of developing countries have inspired both the overall structure of the agreement and certain articles. In particular, the objective of facilitating the increasing participation of developing countries in trade in services has been enshrined in the preamble to the agreement and is based on the provisions of Article IV. In particular, this article obliges Members to negotiate specific commitments to strengthen the national service capacity of developing countries; Improving developing countries` access to distribution channels and information networks; and liberalizing market access in the areas of interest to these countries.

The GATS foresees negotiations that will begin within five years in order to achieve a higher level of liberalization of trade in services. This liberalization will aim to strengthen the commitments set out in the timetables and reduce the negative effects of the measures taken by governments. The presentation of this report is organized as follows: Section II deals with general principles and obligations, including dispute resolution and institutional rules.