Where Is The Headquarters Of The World Trade Organization Located?

World Trade Organization (WTO) headquarters at the Centre William Rappard in Geneva, Switzerland. Editorial credit: EQRoy / Shutterstock.com
World Trade Organization (WTO) headquarters at the Centre William Rappard in Geneva, Switzerland. Editorial credit: EQRoy / Shutterstock.com

World Trade Organization

World Trade Organisation (WTO) is an intergovernmental organization that is mandated with the regulation of international trade. An intergovernmental organization is described as an organization that is primarily made up of sovereign states also sometimes referred to as the member states. Since its formation, the World Trade Organization has managed to regulate trade in goods, intellectual property, and services among the member states. This role has been achieved through the provision of a framework that enables the negotiation of trade agreements and dispute resolution that is aimed at imposing participants’ obedience to the agreements of the World Trade Organization. The World Trade Organization is made up of 164 member states. Its current director is Roberto Azevedo who is a diplomat of Brazilian origin. Since the WTO is an international organization, it mainly receives its funds from three sources, i.e., contributions from the member states. The organization has been of great importance in promoting international trade. According to recent studies, WTO has proved to have boosted business. In the absence of this organization, trade barriers would have been significantly high.

Location of the Headquarters of the WTO

The organization was formed under the Marrakesh Agreement in 1995. This agreement was signed by 124 member countries replacing the General Agreement on Trade Tariffs that was started in 1948 to regulate international trade. The World Trade Organization is the largest recognized international economic organization in the entire world, and its headquarters are based in Geneva, Switzerland. The headquarters are situated explicitly in the Center William Rappard which serves as the home of the World Trade Organization. Center William Rappard house was erected in Geneva to serve as a house for international organizations. Since its establishment, this house has served many purposes such as being the home of the International Labor Office, a library to the Institut Universitaire de Hautes Études Internationales, etc. However, since its allocation as the headquarters of the World Trade Organization in 1995, this home has since remained unchanged and has served its purpose as the headquarters of WTO. Every day diplomats and the World Organization Trade secretariat meet at this headquarters to discuss the trade policies and also negotiate various rules regarding international trade. This headquarters also serves as the primary point whereby the diplomats and the secretariat resolve disputes that are connected to the trade agreements laws in the international trade law.

Significance of WTO

The World Trade Organization has been a significant body in the regulation of international trade since its establishment in 1995. This organization has been able to control international commerce by trying to eliminate all the possible barriers that may hinder trade. Apart from playing a pivotal role in regulating international trade, the World Trade Organization also helps in overseeing the administration, operation, and implementation of the agreements covered by the member countries. This organization is also responsible for providing a platform for resolving disputes and negotiations among the member states. All these functions have been made possible using the Geneva headquarters and the various offices located all over the world in the member countries.


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