Introduction"We are talking about the WTO. Yet the 'W 'without China is not the World. Now it will be." (French Finance Minister Laurent Fabius, Nov 2001)The World Trade Organization (WTO) began life on 1 January 1995, but its trading system is half a century older. Since 1948, the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) had provided the rules for the system. Over the years GATT evolved through several rounds of negotiations. The last and largest GATT round, was the Uruguay Round which lasted from 1986 to 1994 and led to the WTO's creation. Whereas GATT had mainly dealt with trade in goods, the WTO and its agreements now cover trade in services and in traded inventions, creations and designs (Hoekman. B. et al; 2001).
China completed a 15-year quest on 10th November in 2001, at the WTO's Fourth Ministerial Conference, in the Qatari capital of Doha to join WTO.
China became the 143rd member of the WTO on December 11, 2001. It brings a market of 1.3 billion people into the global system and changes the way China dose business with the world. Chinese enterprise will benefit from improved access to foreign market and from gaining new technologies and management skills through increased contacts with foreign companies. Meanwhile foreign companies, protected by the WTO's principles of non--discrimination, will gain from this more open large market, from the unprecedented business opportunities.
China's entry as a developing country has raised the expectations among many developing countries in the WTO. The enormous role that China would and could play in the WTO's dispute settlements process is seen as a positive prospect for issues facing the developing countries (R. Gamant et al; 2002).
To discuss China's WTO accession, it is important to understand China's place in the global trading order. Before it adopted...