Progress towards openness and trade has not led to a general move to converging living standards. If some developing countries have indeed caught up with the rich countries, others remain far behind. The former are not systematically those countries which are the most open and the relationship between trade liberalisation and growth appear to be more complex than is often claimed by the advocates of openness. This is not without consequences for the wto, given that most developing countries are now full members of the organisation, having signed the Marrakech Agreements. The next trade round which opens in Doha will have to rebuild trust in a trading system, with multilateral rules designed to replace power politics. The application of special and differential treatment which really guarantees access to Northern markets for developing countries and which recognises that trade liberalisation should not be favoured ahead of development would be determinant from this point of view.
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