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Abstract

The paper considers the GATS commitments made by WTO members on the movement of natural persons (mode 4) since the completion of the Uruguay Round. Two groups of demandeurs exist for liberalisation. The first are developed countries which have sought market access for intra-corporate transferees (ICTs) and professionals. While developing countries were demandeurs during the Uruguay Round negotiations they gained little during the round and have made substantial concessions during the process of WTO accession. These commitments made by developing countries have not only been in the traditional areas such as ICTs but in new areas such as "trading rights", which are GATT commitments with unclear and untested implications for the GATS under mode 3 and mode 4. In the run-up to a new round of negotiations on services, new and very innovative proposals have come from labour-exporting developing countries such as India for the liberalisation of mode 4. The paper considers a wide range of mode 4 proposals made by WTO members, some of which will have profound effects upon global labour markets.

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