This article examines the Hong Kong Ministerial in relation to the specific commitments for relieving the marginalized position of least developed countries (Ldcs) through their market access opportunities. It reveals that such access is limited and riddled with conditions and caveats. Rampant protectionist measures of developed countries against Ldcs’ products have been pushing Ldcs to further marginalization. The Hong Kong Declaration has introduced a new trend of discriminatory preferential treatment to some Ldcs and not others, allowing developed countries to “divide and conquer”. After 60 years of institutionalized trade liberalization, the system is yet to protect the legitimate trading interests of its vulnerable members. The trading plight and dilemma of Bangladesh is highlighted and commented upon to show the continuing marginalization of Ldcs in the post-Hong Kong era.
- least developed countries (Ldcs)
- market access
- market marginalization