International trade rules and practices have worked in favour of developed countries (DCs) but against less-developed countries (LDCs) in recent decades.” Critically evaluate this statement providing real-world examples & recent evidence to support your argument.
In recent decades International trade rules and practices have worked in favour of developed countries but against less developed countries, in recent years however this trend has declined and the future of trade rules and practice appears to be less discriminatory. Less developed countries (LDCs) have consistently been faced with challenging trade rules and practices.
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These rules are manifested in National and Most Favoured Nation (MFN) Treatment. MFN Treatment was replaced with Special and Differential Treatment (SDT) at the Uruguay Round (Manero-Salvador & Ana, 2007). SDT is provided to LDCs with the goal of improving their economic situation, “Almost three-quarters of the members of the WTO are LDCs” (Manero-Salvador & Ana, 2007, 89) and are empowered with ad intra manifestation and ad extra manifestation, enabling them to restrict access to their markets and enjoy easier access to the markets of DCs respectively (Manero-Salvador & Ana, 2007). SDT also entails “promises by developed countries to provide technical assistance to lower-income economies to help them implement multilateral rules” (Hoekman, Michalopoulos & Winter, 2003, 5) in conjouction with exemption to selected WTO rules. SDT is clearly advantageous to countries whom are classified as LDCs by the WTO, unfortunately “in absolute terms, most poor people live in countries that are not LDCs – especially China and India” (Hoekman, Michalopoulos & Winter, 2003, 6), this clearly demonstrates that while International trade rules in the SDT area are advantageous to classified LDCs, they clearly disadvantage many poor countries who don’t fall under this classification. Several WTO rules are unmistakably advantageous only once a country has reached a certain level of wealth. It has also been argued that to a