Define: World Trade Organisation

UK Accounting Glossary

Definition: World Trade Organisation


Quick Summary of World Trade Organisation


The World Trade Organisation is an international body that supervises and encourages international trade.


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What is the dictionary definition of World Trade Organisation?

Dictionary Definition


The World Trade Organisation (WTO) is an international trade organisation formed under the General Agreement on Tariffs And Trade (GATT)  as a replacement for GATT intended to implement measures agreed to at the Uruguay Round in 1994.

The World Trade Organisation’s aims are to continue GATT’s work in agreeing upon international trading rules and furthering the liberalisation of international trade.

WTO rules are very important in respect to international trade contracts and the WTO’s jurisdiction also extends into such aspects of trading as intellectual property rights.

The highest authority within the WTO is the Ministerial Conference, which is held approximately every 2 years.

The WTO began operating on the 1st January 1995 and as of 2016 had 164 member states.


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Full Definition of World Trade Organisation


An international body to supervise and encourage international trade.

An international trade organisation was first proposed following the Bretton Woods conference (1944), but was never set up; the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) was started instead.

GATT organised the Uruguay Round trade talks, and concluded activities in 1994 with the establishment of the World Trade Organisation (WTO); the latter being intended to take over the GATT’s functions in encouraging multilateral trade in goods and services.


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World Trade Organisation FAQ's



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This glossary post was last updated: 29th January 2019.