GENEVA – The World Trade Organization has pulled off a major deal that could boost global commerce by $1 trillion annually after years of negotiation.
Diplomats says the deal approved Thursday is the first multilateral trade agreement in the organization's 20-year history. It will go into effect after all 160 member countries ratify, expected sometime next year.
A U.S.-India deal this month over food stockpiling by India cleared the way for the agreement that U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman said "preserved the letter and spirit of the package of decisions" reached at a WTO summit last December in Bali.
European Union Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmstroem said the deal will "lift millions out of poverty."