In Davos in late January, several powerful governments and their allies announced their intention to launch new negotiations on e-commerce. Unusually, the intention is to launch the plurilateral negotiations in the World Trade Organization (WTO), an ostensibly multilateral organization, setting problematic precedents for the future of multilateral negotiations.
The world of today is considerably different from the one at the end of the Second World War; there are no more any colonies, though there are still some 'dependent' territories.
Gamani Corea, 87, world-renowned Sri Lankan economist, Secretary-General of the UN Conference on Trade and Development (1974-1984), and former chairman of the Board of the South Centre, passed away after a brief illness in Colombo on Sunday, a day before his 88th birthday.
Trade diplomats and trade officials face several uncertainties in 2012. Many of these have their source in the continuing serious global financial crisis and its deadening hand on the real economy. This, and the reality of the major role played by corporate finance capital in the electoral process of countries, ensures nothing will be done, at least not this year, to tackle the root causes of the financial crisis, with criminal fraudulence at its heart.