World Trade Organization
It is the task of the World Trade Organization to deal with the flows of commerce between nations. It is the lone international organization in this field, which has been generally resistant to regulation. The job of the W.T.O. is not to regulate per se, but rather to provide a forum in which member nations can discuss international trade and tariffs. All of this discussion is aimed at lowering and removing barriers to trade and commerce between nations, thereby enhancing economic development for the members. Imbalances of trade due to unethical business behavior also becomes the business of the W.T.O. if the specific case falls under the W.T.O.'s charter. Currently the W.T.O. has 138 member nations, with Oman soon to be gaining admittance as the 139th.
Important Note: This committee's format will be slightly different from the standard model. The World Trade Organization does not consider policy in the general terms that United Nations committees do; rather, policy is governed by precedent, and decisions made by the W.T.O. in certain situations result in policy via this route. So, instead of submitting resolutions generally on the subject of, for example, multinational corporations, each delegate will instead submit a resolution designed to engender a trade agreement between two countries in dispute. A specific example will be provided for each topic, and it will be that case that the W.T.O. will attempt to mediate.
Topic 1: Genetically Engineered Foods.
Specific case: Currently there is a major debate regarding the sale of genetically engineered crops to
Africa. The companies interested in selling these crops to African farmers want to sell seeds that have
been genetically altered to be only annuals, not perennials, thus forcing the buyers to buy new seeds every
year. The W.T.O. should consider this problem during the course of debate.
Topic 2: Labor and Internationalization.
Specific case: Western economies have been experiencing significant labor deficits as multinational
corporations have shifted the production of their products overseas to take advantage of cheaper labor.
The W.T.O. should consider the ramifications of this question with special attention to China and the
poor countries of the Pacific Rim.
Topic 3: Regulating Multinational Corporations*
Grand changes are the rule of the times in our world.
The end of the Cold War was the beginning of a series of major alterations
of the everyday business of the world, and we are still having that
experience today, nearly ten years after the fall of the United Soviet
Socialist Republics. The most important change for you as delegates
is the globalization of the economy. No modern technoeconomy can stand
on a strictly national basis, because no nation today has all of the
resources needed to function alone. The Cold War, especially during
the times of massive defense spending in the 1980's, was fertile ground
for extremely powerful corporations to form. They too have found it
impossible or unpalatable to remain contained in their country of origin,
and so have spread out to become what are called "multinational
corporations." The name is self-explanatory, except that it may
be useful to define the term "corporation" so that all delegates
will know what it means. For that reason, this definition
from the American Heritage Dictionary (4th Edition) will be used: "A
body that is granted a charter recognizing it as a separate legal entity
having its own rights, privileges, and liabilities distinct from those
of its members."
As always, please make sure to thoroughly understand your government's position on the subject, as it will be your position as a delegate in this committee.
United Nations Home
| The University of Montana | The
College of Arts and Sciences | Conference
| Delegates | Advisors
| Staff | Survey
Results | Keynote Speaker | Conference Format | 2000 MMUN Itinerary | 2000 Country List | MUN Sites | Nation Backgrounder
Delegation Preparation Guide | Guide to Writing a Draft Resolution | MMUN Rules of Procedure | Research Tools | Country Placard
Credentials Sheet | Director's Letter | 2000 MMUN Fee Registration | Meal Plan Form | General Plenary
General Plenary First Committee: Security and Disarmament | Human Rights Committee | ASEAN |Social Development Committee
World Trade Organization | United Nations Environmental Programme | Security Council | Crisis | International Court of Justice | MMUN Staff Descriptions
Spectral Fusion, 2001. All