The World Trade Organization
A Citizen's Guide

Shrybman, Steven
Publisher:  Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives & Lorimer, Ottawa, Canada
Year Published:  1999
Pages:  154pp   Price:  $19.95   ISBN:  1-55028-687-0
Library of Congress Number:  HF1479.S53 1999   Dewey:  382'3'0971
Resource Type:  Book
Cx Number:  CX6140

Shrybman argues that the WTO not only aggravates envrionmental and social problems, but takes away the tools that governments need to address them.

Shryban argues that the World Trade Organization undermines Canada's policy autonomy, with particular focus on its negative impact on environmental policy. He chooses an environmental lens because he believes that the WTO's promotion of economic development via unregulated growth and production specialization cannot be reconciled with environmental sustainability. In short, the he believes that the WTO not only aggravates the problem, but takes away the tools that governments need to address it.

As the title suggests, Shryban wrote this guide to provide a working understanding of trade policy for the average Canadian citizen. While he admits that international trade issues are complex, he believes its understanding is necessary if citizens want to make informed demands on their governments to reform current trade policies. To that end, his chapters avoid excessive jargon while providing directions for reform.

The book is divided into 3 sections. Chapters 1 and 2 provide a broad overview of international trade, followed by a more specific look at important WTO agreements. Chapters 3 to 11 examine how trade rules impact various economic, social and environmental policies. Chapter 12 concludes by suggesting the importance of reform in order to avert the negative consequences of globalization.

[Abstract by Jared Ong]

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