|World Institutions and Globalization|
During World War II, world leaders recognized the need for international economic institutions. These laid the foundation for globalization.
In 1944, political leaders established the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank.
In 1948 the General Agreement of Tariffs and Trade (GATT) followed along with a new wave of regional organizations. It instituted a code of rules by which countries could trade, as well as a forum for resolving trade disputes. It aimed to liberalize world trade through the reduction of trade barriers. Nations coordinated their trade policies through the GATT. During the Uruguay Round in April 1994, over 120 countries signed an agreement in Marrakesh, Morocco, that created the World Trade Organization (WTO). The successor to the GATT, it acts as the United Nations of world trade, and continues to liberalize the global market. It began operation in January of 1995.
The UN, founded with 51 Member States, now includes 192. The UN's peacekeeping role broadened considerably in recent years. Since the end of the Cold War, the UN has involved itself in the settling of conflicts across the globe. Commenting on this development, The Economist stated in an article that appeared in their November 9, 1991 issue entitled, "New Ways To Run the World" : "For the first time the nations of the world, rich and poor, are beginning to cooperate for agreed ends on a scale that hitherto only idealists have even dreamed about."
In 1991, a year before the Earth Summit, thirty-six respected world leaders put forth a document calling for a World Summit on Global Governance. The Stockholm Initiative aims to strengthen the UN so that it can better handle the global challenges of the future. It seek to adopt a new approach to maintaining and developing international law. The proposed Commission on Global Governance seeks to strengthen the UN or form a new institution for the same purpose. Former European Commission President Jacques Delors suggested that the UN develop a "Council for Economic Security" to rewrite the rules for the global village. Delors saw it as unacceptable that single nations attempt to solve problems that have a worldwide scope.
The idea of having international rules echoes in many foreign affairs journals and has for several decades. Dennis Healy, Britain's former Defense Minister and Chancellor of the Exchequer, stated in 1991 in his article "Pax Americana is a Dangerous Illusion," which appeared in the August/September 1991 issue of European Affairs: "If we are talking about a new world order, I can only see a role for the UN. We can no longer tackle the great problems like environmental pollution, migration and global arms control, on a regional basis. International rules are required, especially when we remember that the population of the world is doubling every 50 years."
In 1944, The International Monetary Fund (IMF), founded at the Bretton Woods Conference secures global monetary joint action. It enlists 184 member nations.
In 1975 The Conference on Security and Cooperation began functioning. It enlists 56 nations. It deals with security, human rights, and trade as a regional organization under the UN Charter. Its job includes giving early warning of potential conflicts, improving crisis management, and developing military confidence-building mechanisms. Besides the CSCE, other regional organizations have sprung up since World War II.
The EU bases its policy and laws on those of global institutions. For areas of policy not covered by any of these groups the EU establishes its own. The Council of Europe deals with human rights, health, migration, law, culture, and the environment. All of these bodies use abbreviated letters or acronyms which are synonymous with the EU. Political leaders are negotiating and signing so many of these treaties that it would require an entire book to list and explain them all. All of these groups act as the foundation stones for globalization.