Provisions for LDCs in the General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS)

The creation of the GATS was one of the landmark achievements of the Uruguay Round, whose results entered into force in January 1995. The GATS was inspired by essentially the same objectives as its counterpart in merchandise trade, the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT): creating a credible and reliable system of international trade rules; ensuring fair and equitable treatment of all participants (principle of non-discrimination); stimulating economic activity through guaranteed policy bindings; and promoting trade and development through progressive liberalization.

The following provisions & measures within the General Agreement on Trade in Services  are LDC -specific:

  1. Support for Increasing LDC Participation through the negotiations of specific commitments (Art. IV:1)
  2. Establishment of Contact Points (Article IV. 2)
  3. Technical assistance by WTO Secretariat in the Preparation & Application of GATS Measures (Art. XXV.2)
  4. Technical assistance by WTO Members in the Preparation & Application of GATS Measures
  5. Technical Cooperation in the Preparation & Application of improving Telecommunications with Developed Countries

Available Smooth Transition Procedures:

Utilization by LDCs:

Resources:

  1. The General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS): objectives, coverage and disciplines
  2. How the GATS is Administered
  3. Misconceptions about the GATS
  4. GATS information & resource gateway
  5. GATS Annex on Telecommunications
  6. The General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS): objectives, coverage and disciplines: Everything you wanted to know about the General Agreement on Trade in Services, but were afraid to ask