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Singapore Issues
The "Singapore issues" refers to four working groups set up during the World Trade Organization Ministerial Conference of 1996 in Singapore. These groups are tasked with these issues: transparency in government procurement, trade facilitation (customs issues), trade and investment, and trade and competition. These issues were pushed at successive Ministerials by the European Union, Japan and Korea, and opposed by most developing countries. The United States was lukewarm about the inclusion of these issues, indicating that it could accept some or all of them at various times, but preferring to focus on market access. This article is available to subscribers only. Disagreements between largely developed and developing economies prevented a resolution in these issues, despite repeated attempts to revisit them, notably during the 2003 Ministerial Conference in Cancún, Mexico, whereby no progress was made. Since, some progress has been achieved in the area of trade facilitation. In July ...
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World Trade Organization
The World Trade Organization (WTO) is an intergovernmental organization that regulates and facilitates international trade. With effective cooperation in the United Nations System, governments use the organization to establish, revise, and enforce the rules that govern international trade. It officially commenced operations on 1 January 1995, pursuant to the 1994 Marrakesh Agreement, thus replacing the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) that had been established in 1948. The WTO is the world's largest international economic organization, with 164 member states representing over 98% of global trade and global GDP. The WTO facilitates trade in goods, services and intellectual property among participating countries by providing a framework for negotiating trade agreements, which usually aim to reduce or eliminate tariffs, quotas, and other restrictions; these agreements are signed by representatives of member governmentsUnderstanding the WTO' Handbook at WTO officia ...
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WTO Ministerial Conference Of 1996
The World Trade Organization's Ministerial Conference of 1996 was held in Singapore on December 9 - December 13, 1996. The inaugural meeting for the organisation since its formation. The event was hosted by the government of Singapore at the Singapore International Convention and Exhibition Centre in Suntec City. The conference established four permanent working groups, covering transparency in government procurement, trade facilitation (customs issues), trade and investment, and trade and competition. The purpose of the first of these groups was to conduct "a study on transparency in government procurement practices, taking into account national policies and, based on this study, to develop elements for inclusion in an appropriate agreement".WTO Report (2000) of the Working Group on Transparency in Government Procurement to the General Council, (31 October 2000), cited in Kinsey, M. A.TRANSPARENCY IN GOVERNMENT PROCUREMENT: AN INTERNATIONAL CONSENSUS? Public Contract Law Jou ...
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Singapore
Singapore (), officially the Republic of Singapore, is a sovereign island country and city-state in maritime Southeast Asia. It lies about one degree of latitude () north of the equator, off the southern tip of the Malay Peninsula, bordering the Strait of Malacca to the west, the Singapore Strait to the south, the South China Sea to the east, and the Straits of Johor to the north. The country's territory is composed of one main island, 63 satellite islands and islets, and one outlying islet; the combined area of these has increased by 25% since the country's independence as a result of extensive land reclamation projects. It has the third highest population density in the world. With a multicultural population and recognising the need to respect cultural identities of the major ethnic groups within the nation, Singapore has four official languages: English, Malay, Mandarin, and Tamil. English is the lingua franca and numerous public services are available only in Englis ...
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Government Procurement
Government procurement or public procurement is the procurement of goods, services and works on behalf of a public authority, such as a government agency. Amounting to 12 percent of global GDP in 2018, government procurement accounts for a substantial part of the global economy. To prevent fraud, waste, corruption, or local protectionism, the laws of most countries regulate government procurement to some extent. Laws usually require the procuring authority to issue public tenders if the value of the procurement exceeds a certain threshold. Government procurement is also the subject of the Agreement on Government Procurement (GPA), a plurilateral international treaty under the auspices of the WTO. Overview Need for government procurement Government procurement is necessary because governments cannot produce all the inputs for the goods they provide themselves. Governments usually provide public goods, e.g. national defense or public infrastructure. Public goods are non-ri ...
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Trade Facilitation
Trade facilitation looks at how procedures and controls governing the movement of goods across national borders can be improved to reduce associated cost burdens and maximise efficiency while safeguarding legitimate regulatory objectives. Business costs may be a direct function of collecting information and submitting declarations or an indirect consequence of border checks in the form of delays and associated time penalties, forgone business opportunities and reduced competitiveness. Understanding and use of the term “trade facilitation” varies in the literature and amongst practitioners. "Trade facilitation" is largely used by institutions which seek to improve the regulatory interface between government bodies and traders at national borders. The WTO, in an online training package, has defined trade facilitation as “the simplification and harmonisation of international trade procedures”, where trade procedures are the “activities, practices and formalities invol ...
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Trade
Trade involves the transfer of goods and services from one person or entity to another, often in exchange for money. Economists refer to a system or network that allows trade as a market. An early form of trade, barter, saw the direct exchange of goods and services for other goods and services, i.e. trading things without the use of money. Modern traders generally negotiate through a medium of exchange, such as money. As a result, buying can be separated from selling, or earning. The invention of money (and letter of credit, paper money, and non-physical money) greatly simplified and promoted trade. Trade between two traders is called bilateral trade, while trade involving more than two traders is called multilateral trade. In one modern view, trade exists due to specialization and the division of labour, a predominant form of economic activity in which individuals and groups concentrate on a small aspect of production, but use their output in trades for other products ...
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Investment
Investment is the dedication of money to purchase of an asset to attain an increase in value over a period of time. Investment requires a sacrifice of some present asset, such as time, money, or effort. In finance, the purpose of investing is to generate a return from the invested asset. The return may consist of a gain (profit) or a loss realized from the sale of a property or an investment, unrealized capital appreciation (or depreciation), or investment income such as dividends, interest, or rental income, or a combination of capital gain and income. The return may also include currency gains or losses due to changes in the foreign currency exchange rates. Investors generally expect higher returns from riskier investments. When a low-risk investment is made, the return is also generally low. Similarly, high risk comes with a chance of high losses. Investors, particularly novices, are often advised to diversify their portfolio. Diversification has the statistical effe ...
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Competition
Competition is a rivalry where two or more parties strive for a common goal which cannot be shared: where one's gain is the other's loss (an example of which is a zero-sum game). Competition can arise between entities such as organisms, individuals, economic and social groups, etc. The rivalry can be over attainment of any exclusive goal, including recognition: Competition occurs in nature, between living organisms which co-exist in the same environment. Animals compete over water supplies, food, mates, and other biological resources. Humans usually compete for food and mates, though when these needs are met deep rivalries often arise over the pursuit of wealth, power, prestige, and fame when in a static, repetitive, or unchanging environment. Competition is a major tenet of market economies and business, often associated with business competition as companies are in competition with at least one other firm over the same group of customers. Competition inside a company is u ...
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The Economist
''The Economist'' is a British weekly newspaper printed in demitab format and published digitally. It focuses on current affairs, international business, politics, technology, and culture. Based in London, the newspaper is owned by The Economist Group, with its core editorial offices in the United States, as well as across major cities in continental Europe, Asia, and the Middle East. In 2019, its average global print circulation was over 909,476; this, combined with its digital presence, runs to over 1.6 million. Across its social media platforms, it reaches an audience of 35 million, as of 2016. The newspaper has a prominent focus on data journalism and interpretive analysis over original reporting, to both criticism and acclaim. Founded in 1843, ''The Economist'' was first circulated by Scottish economist James Wilson to muster support for abolishing the British Corn Laws (1815–1846), a system of import tariffs. Over time, the newspaper's coverage expanded further into ...
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Cancún
Cancún ( ), often Cancun in English (without the accent; or ) is a city in southeast Mexico on the northeast coast of the Yucatán Peninsula in the Mexican state of Quintana Roo. It is a significant tourist destination in Mexico and the seat of the municipality of Benito Juárez. The city is on the Caribbean Sea and is one of Mexico's easternmost points. Cancún is just north of Mexico's Caribbean coast resort area known as the Riviera Maya. Etymology and coat of arms According to early Spanish sources, the island of Cancún was originally known to its Maya inhabitants as ( yua, niʔ suʔuk), meaning either 'promontory' or 'point of grass'. The name ''Cancún'', ''Cancum'' or ''Cankun'' first appears on 18th-century maps. In older English-language documents, the city's name is sometimes spelled ''Cancoon'', an attempt to convey the sound of the name. ''Cancún'' is derived from the Mayan name , composed of 'snake' and the verb ~ 'to swell, overfill'. Two translations ...
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Mexico
Mexico (Spanish: México), officially the United Mexican States, is a country in the southern portion of North America. It is bordered to the north by the United States; to the south and west by the Pacific Ocean; to the southeast by Guatemala, Belize, and the Caribbean Sea; and to the east by the Gulf of Mexico. Mexico covers ,Mexico
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making it the world's 13th-largest country by are ...
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Doha Development Agenda
The Doha Development Round or Doha Development Agenda (DDA) is the trade-negotiation round of the World Trade Organization (WTO) which commenced in November 2001 under then director-general Mike Moore. Its objective was to lower trade barriers around the world, and thus facilitate increased global trade. The Doha Agenda began with a ministerial-level meeting in Doha, Qatar in 2001. The aim was to put less developed countries' priorities at heart. The needs of the developing countries were the core reasons for the meeting. The major factors discussed include trade facilitation, services, rules of origin and dispute settlement. Special and differential treatment for the developing countries were also discussed as a major concern. Subsequent ministerial meetings took place in Cancún, Mexico (2003), and Hong Kong (2005). Related negotiations took place in Paris, France (2005), Potsdam, Germany (2007), and Geneva, Switzerland (2004, 2006, 2008). Progress in negotiations stalled aft ...
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