Structure of WTO – World Trade Organization

The Organizational structure of the WTO is outlined in the following chart.

WTO Structure

WTO Structure

The Ministerial Conference (MC) is at the top of the structured organization of the WTO. It is the supreme governing body which takes ultimate decisions on all matters. It is constituted by representative (usually, Ministers of Trade) all the member countries.

The General Council (GC) is composed of the representatives of all the members. It is the real engine of WTO which acts on behalf of the MC. It also acts as the Dispute Settlement Body as well as the Trade Policy Review Body.

There are three councils viz : the Council for Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) operating under the GC. These councils with their subsidiary bodies carry out their specific responsibilities.

Further there are three committee, viz, the committee on Balance of Payments Restrictions (CBOPR) and the committee o Budget, Finance and Administration (CFBA) which execute the functions assigned to them by the WTO Agreement and the GC.

The Administration of the WTO is conducted by the Secretariat which is headed by the Director General (DG) appointed by the MC for the tenure of four years. He is assisted by the four Deputy Directors from different member countries. The annual budget estimates and financial statement of the WTO are presented by the DG to the CBFA for reivew and recommendations for the final approval by the GC.