Digital technologies and trade

Trade in services

International trade in services is conducted to a very large and increasing extent through electronic means. The revolution in communications technologies has made many services tradable across borders and has increased the importance of their contribution to international trade, economic growth and development. Cross-border services trade is greatly facilitated by the ease with which services products can be traded as digitalized information flows. The General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS) established the first framework of international law and multilateral commitments where this trade can take place securely.

Council for Trade in Services

The Council for Trade in Services is responsible for facilitating the operation of the GATS and for furthering its objectives. It is one of the WTO bodies mandated to examine all trade-related issues relating to global electronic commerce under the Work Programme on Electronic Commerce. This issue figures prominently on its agenda.

Telecommunication services

Telecommunication services are the core of the digital economy, enabling e-commerce in goods and services.  The GATS contains specific rules for this sector.

Computer and related services

Computer and related services underpin the modern economy and the digital transformation of business and trade. The creation and uptake of new technologies owe their evolution to innovative computer programs and software developers. Artificial intelligence, cloud computing and the Internet are some examples.



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