E-Commerce and the Digital Economy

Work Programme on Electronic Commerce: A Brief overview of its Evolution in the WTO

Following the Nairobi decision allowing WTO members to consider negotiating some “new issues”, electronic commerce has received renewed interest in trade debates over the past few months. The existing WTO work programme on e-commerce, which has deliberated in detail various aspects of the issue since it was launched in 1998, is likely to form the basis of any renewed WTO work on the matter. In order to inform the current debate and clarify what is at stake, this briefing paper reviews how e-commerce has been dealt with so far in the WTO and its relevant committees.