Trade and Investment
There are three main areas of work in the WTO on trade and investment:
- A Working Group established in 1996 conducts analytical work on the relationship between trade and investment.
- The Agreement on Trade-Related Investment Measures (“TRIMs Agreement”), one of the Multilateral Agreements on Trade in Goods, prohibits trade-related investment measures, such as local content requirements, that are inconsistent with basic provisions of GATT 1994.
- The General Agreement on Trade in Services addresses foreign investment in services as one of four modes of supply of services.
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Introduction to trade and investment in the WTO
information about trade and investment in the WTO
Links to the trade and investment section of the WTO Guide Understanding the WTO.
The three areas of work on trade and investment in the WTO
1. Working Group on the relationship between trade and investment
The Working Group on the Relationship between Trade and Investment was established during the 1996 Ministerial Conference in Singapore to examine the relationship between trade and investment. There is no negotiation of new rules or commitments.
The mandate of the Working Group
Declaration of the 1996 Ministerial Conference in
See decision item 20
Checklist of issues suggested for study by the Working Group (document code WT/WGTI/2; opens in a new window) — see annex 1 of this document.
Decision of the General Council on the work of the Working Group (document code WT/WGTI/2; opens in a new window) — see paragraphs 226 - 227 of this document.
Work on the relationship between trade and investment
Documents of the Working Group on trade and investment use the code WT/WGTI/* (where * takes additional values)
These links open a new window: allow a moment for the results to appear.
> help with downloading these documents
- Reports of the Working Group to the WTO General Council (Document code WT/WGTI/* and “report”) > search
- Working documents of the Working Group (Document
- Reports on meetings of the Working Group (Document code WT/WGTI/M/*) > search
- List of representatives from WTO members for the purposes of the Working Group (Document code WT/WGTI/INF/*) > search
3. Trade and Investment in the context of the GATS
of the GATS and rules for growth and investment
Links to the section on GATS and rules for growth and investment section of the WTO Guide Understanding the WTO.
Download the legal text of the GATS in pdf format.
Work on investment and the GATS
See the Services section of the WTO website for information on work within the WTO on investment and the general agreement for trade in services (GATS)