The meeting is at the Washington State Convention and Trade Center


SEE ALSO:
Director-General’s message
Background
Built-in Agenda
The WTO agreements and developing countries
Least-developed countries
Agriculture (1)
Agriculture (2)
Sanitary and phytosanitary (SPS) measures
Services
Intellectual property (TRIPS)
Textiles and clothing
Information technology products
Trade and environment
Trade and investment
Trade facilitation
Trade and competition policy
Transparency in government procurement
Trade and labour standards
Disputes (1)
Disputes (2)
Electronic commerce
Members and accessions
Some facts and figures
Glossary of terms

AND:

Other ministerial meetings


SOME FACTS AND FIGURES

Stats for Seattle

All figures from the WTO unless source specified.

On this page: 50 years of GATT/WTO, FDI and global integration, duty-free imports from least-developed countries, trade benefits for US workers and consumers, global gains from 40% cuts in protection, 50 years of tariff cuts, 50 years of world trade/output

See also: some agricultural trade statistics


50 years of GATT/WTO 1948-1998  back to top

  • Merchandise trade grew by 6% annually, or 18 fold.
  • Merchandise output grew by 4.2% annually, or 8 fold.
  • The share of world GDP represented by merchandise trade grew from under 7% to 17.4%.
  • Aggregate world trade in 1998 was $6.6 trillion, of which $5.3 trillion (80%) was merchandise and $1.3 trillion (20%) was commercial services. (Merchandise trade in 1948 was $58 billion.)
  • GDP per capita grew by 1.9% annually.
  • On average, per capita income is 2.5 times higher in 1998 than in 1948.

FDI flows and global integration  back to top

  • Global FDI flows grew 27 fold (or 14% annually) between 1973 and 1998.
  • Global FDI flows reached $645 billion in 1998 ($24 billion in 1973, $60 billion in 1985).
  • Global FDI stock rose 8 fold since 1980 or 12.5% annually.
  • Global FDI stock stood at $4,100 billion in 1998.
  • Cross-border mergers & acquisitions topped $544 billion in 1998, more than three times the average of $145 billion during 1990-94.
  • The ratio of FDI inward stock to GDP more than doubled between 1980 and 1997 globally, from 5.0% to 11.7%.
  • For developing countries, the corresponding ratio almost tripled from 5.9% to 16.6%.
  • For least-developed countries, the ratio rose from 2.2% in 1980 to 5.7% in 1997.

Duty-free treatment for imports from least-developed countries  back to top

  • In 1998, US imports from the 48 least-developed countries (LDCs) amounted to $6.3 billion or 0.7% of total US merchandise imports.
  • If US granted duty-free treatment to imports from LDCs, the US tariff revenue loss would be $123 million out of a total US tariff revenue of $17,500 million.

Trade benefits for US workers and consumers  back to top
(Figures from USTR website)

  • Full implementation of WTO agreements (by 2005) will boost US GDP by $125–250 billion per year.
  • The annual effect will be equivalent to an increase of $1500–$3000 in purchasing power for the average American family of four.
  • Between 1994 and 1998, 1.3 million new jobs supported by exports were created in the US.
  • Over the same period, total US employment increased by 11.7 million jobs, and the unemployment rate declined from 6.1% to 4.5%.
  • Nearly 12 million jobs in the US (or almost 10% of all US jobs) depend on US exports.
  • Jobs in the US supported by goods exports pay 13–16% above the average wage.
  • Over 60% of the US economy and 80% of US jobs are accounted for by the services sector.
  • The US is the world’s largest exporter of services totalling over $264 billion annually.

Global benefits from 40% cuts in trade protection  back to top
(Figures from World Bank conference paper "Agriculture & Non-Agricultural Liberalization in the Millennium Round", Oct 1999)

Estimated global gains as a result of 40% cuts in protection by 2005 in the following areas:

  • Agricultural subsidies & market price support $69.3 billion
  • Tariffs on manufactures & mining products $69.6 billion
  • Business, finance & construction services $21.6 billion
  • Trade, transport & government services $332.6 billion

GATT/WTO: 50 years of tariff reductions  back to top

MFN tariff reduction of industrial countries for industrial products, excluding petroleum

Implementation period Round covered Weighted tariff reduction of all duties
1948–63 First five GATT rounds (1947–62) a –36
1968–72 Kennedy Round (1964–67) b –37
1980–87 Tokyo Round (1973–1979) c –33
1995–99 Uruguay Round (1986–94) d –38

NOTE: Tariff reductions for the first five trade rounds refer to US only

a) Source: US Tariff Commission, Operations of the Trade Agreements Program,
1st to 13th report covering June 1934 to June 1960

b) refers to four markets: US, Japan, EC(6), and UK.
Source: Ernest H Preeg, Traders and Diplomats, Tables 13-1 to 13–4
and WTO calculations based on 1964 import values

c) refers to eight markets: US, EU(9), Japan, Austria, Finland, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland
Source: GATT, COM.TD/W/315, 4.7.1980, p.20–21 and WTO calculations

d) refers to eight markets: US, EU(12), Japan, Austria, Finland, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland
Source: GATT, The Results of the Uruguay Round of Multilateral Trade Negotiations,
November 1994, Appendix Table 5 and WTO calculations.


World trade and output  back to top
Selected Indicators, 1948-98

            Average annual change
  1948 1950 1973 1990 1998 1948–73 1973–98 1948–98 1990–98
                   
World merchandise exports                  
Billion current $ 58 61 579 3,438 5,235 9.7 9.2 9.4 5.4
Billion constant 1990$ 304 376 1797 3,438 5,683 7.4 4.7 6.0 6.5
Exports per capita, 1990$ 123 149 466 651 951 5.5 2.9 4.2 4.9
                   
World exports of manufactures                  
Billion current $ 22 23 348 2,390 3,995 11.7 10.3 11.0 6.6
Billion constant 1990$ 93 112 955 2,390 4,015 9.8 5.9 7.8 6.7
Exports per capita, 1990$ 38 44 244 454 672 7.8 4.1 5.9 5.1
                   
World output
(Indices, 1990=100)
                 
Commodity output 17 19 65 100 116 5.5 2.4 3.9 1.9
Manufacturing output 11 13 60 100 117 7.1 2.7 4.9 2.0
GDP (Billion, 1990$) 3,935 4,285 13,408 22,490 27,615 5.0 2.9 4.0 2.6
GDP per capita (1990$) 1,591 1,700 3,420 4,271 4,623 3.1 1.2 2.2 1.0
GDP (current $, market rate) 4,908 22,490 29,236 7.4 3.3
                   
Trade-output ratio
Exports of goods and services, to GDP, at constant 1987 prices 8.0 14.9 19.7 26.4
World population (million) 2,473 2,521 3,920 5,266 5,973 1.9 1.7 1.8 1.6