11 Feb 2021
MILE 19, Urvi Tembey
WTO and its role in reducing the economic shock of the pandemic
Article by Urvi Tembey published by the Observer Research Foundation (ORF) (2021).
The WTO has served as ‘constructed focal point’ during the pandemic by helping countries coordinate their policy responses.
Commentators and academics have regularly drawn attention to the importance of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) in regulating trade and reducing barriers. However, the role that the institution has played — and continues to play — in reducing the economic shock of the COVID-19 pandemic, and thereby mitigating its adverse impacts, merits more attention. The WTO has helped in absorbing this blow in a three-pronged manner: First, by helping members coordinate their trade policies; second, by ensuring transparency with regard to pandemic-related measures; and lastly, by monitoring members’ trade responses to the pandemic.