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World Trade Organisation

World Trade Organisation (WTO) is an international body, which aims at liberalising international trade. It was started at the initiative of the developed countries.

i. WTO establishes rules regarding international trade,
ii. It sees that the member countries obey these rules and
iii. 149 countries of the world are currently members of the WTO (2006).

WTO Head Quarters


Location: Geneva, Switzerland
Established: 1 January 1995
Created by: Uruguay Round negotiations (1986-94) 
Membership: 151 countries on 27 July 2007
Budget: 182 million Swiss francs for 2007
Secretariat staff: 625
Head: Pascal Lamy (Director-General)


  • Administering WTO trade agreements.
  • Forum for trade negotiations.
  • Handling trade disputes.
  • Monitoring national trade policies.
  • Technical assistance and training for developing countries.
  • Cooperation with other international organizations. 

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