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Electronic Commerce and General Agreement on Trade in Services

Sheela Rai

Foreign Trade Review, 2003, vol. 38, issue 3-4, 79-104

Abstract: International Trade has witnessed a simultaneous growth in electronic commerce and trade in services. Absence of requirement of physical delivery of goods makes trade in services through electronic means easier in comparison to trade in goods by the use of electronic medium. The World Trade Organisation seeks to liberalise trade in services in a gradual manner. The General Agreement on Trade in Services identifies four modes of supply of trade in services of which the first two are relevant for e-commerce. The present paper identifies the issues involved in trade in services through electronic means and examines how the framework under the General Agreement on Trade in Services regulates and affects e-commerce and is in turn also affected by it. Some suggest greater liberalisation in services trade as a possible solution to many of the problems involved. However, now both developing and developed countries have reservations about it guided by their policy consideration and economic compulsions.

Date: 2003
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DOI: 10.1177/0015732515040405

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