Poverty and Trade : Glossary

There are 60 documents in this section.

  • Quota

    23 May 2002

    A limit (in terms of quantity or value) set by government on the amount of a particular product which can be imported or exported during a specific period.

  • Rules of origin

    23 May 2002

    These determine the country in which a product is said to have originated. They are used to ensure that trade preferences benefit goods which originate wholly in, or are manufactured in, the developing countries intended to benefit from the preferential market access.

  • Special and differential treatment for developing countries

    23 May 2002

    An example is the principle that exports from developing countries should be given preferential access to markets in developed countries, and that developing countries participating in trade negotiations need not reciprocate fully the concessions they receive. Developing countries may also be given longer time periods for adjusting to new rules.

  • Sustainable development

    23 May 2002

    Sustainable development has as many definitions as subscribers. In essence, it refers to economic development that meets the needs of all without leaving future generations with fewer natural resources than those we enjoy today. It is widely accepted that achieving sustainable development requires balance between three dimensions of complementary change:

    • Economic (towards sustainable patterns of production and consumption)

    • Ecological (towards maintenance and restoration of healthy ecosystems)

    • Social (towards poverty eradication and sustainable livelihoods)

  • Tariffs

    23 May 2002

    Taxes on imports. Tariffs increase the price of imported goods on the domestic market, and thus protect domestic producers from foreign competition. Tariffs are also an important source of revenue for governments. Non-tariff barriers (NTBs) include a range of other restrictions on imports (such as quotas and product standards).

  • Trade barrier

    23 May 2002

    A measure which serves to raise the price of imports, driving a wedge between local prices and world prices.

  • Uruguay Round Agreement

    23 May 2002

    A set of multilateral trade agreements, which was launched in Uruguay, then negotiated between 1986 and 1994, and signed in Marrakesh, Morocco in 1995. It led to the establishment of the WTO. The Agreement expanded the scope of international trade rules to cover agriculture, services, and intellectual property (TRIPS).

  • World Bank

    23 May 2002

    The World Bank was founded in 1944 at a conference attended by 44 governments in Bretton Woods, New Hampshire, USA. It has a membership of 183 countries (as at April 2002). Its headquarters are in Washington DC, and it has over 100 country offices around the world.

    The World Bank is actually a group of five organisations: the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD), the International Development Association (IDA), the International Finance Corporation (IFC), the Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA), and the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID).

    Its original purpose was to help rebuild Europe after the Second World War, and its first loan was to France for post-war reconstruction. Today, however, its stated goal is to help developing countries fight poverty, and to establish economic growth that is stable, sustainable, and equitable. A major part of its work is to provide financial loans and technical assistance to its members.

  • World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD)

    23 May 2002

    The World Summit on Sustainable Development takes place from 26 August - 4 September 2002 in Johannesburg, South Africa. Governments, UN agencies, and civil society organisations will come together to assess progress since the UN Conference on Environment and Development held in Rio in 1992 (hence the title 'Rio + 10' for the Johannesburg meeting).

    Sustainable development is defined in the report from the Rio meeting as being 'economic progress which meets all of our needs without leaving future generations with fewer resources than those we enjoy'.

  • World Trade Organisation (WTO)

    23 May 2002

    The World Trade Organisation, formed in 1995, is the international body which governs world trade. It does this through a series of agreements, or rules, which are negotiated between its members. A series of trade negotiations is called a 'round' (e.g. the 'Uruguay Round', which was launched in Uruguay in 1986).

    The four main agreements are the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT), the General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS), the Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS), and the Agreement on Trade-Related Investment Measures (TRIMS).

    The members of the WTO are drawn from countries across the world. They currently number 144 (as of April 2002), with others applying to join. The WTO's highest decision-making body is the Ministerial Council, which meets at least once every two years.