Barbados is a founding member of the WTO. Barbados, along with other leaders of General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT), joined the GATT Contracting Group in 1967. In December 1994, the deal was concluded by Marrakesh to form the WTO. As a small open economy, Barbados depends heavily on trade and thus on an effective multilateral trade system. The WTO was established on 1 January 1995. Originally, the Multilateral Trade Mechanism was formed under the GATT in 1947. The WTO has 164 members and 24 observer governments. Afghanistan became the 164th member on 29 July 2016. The WTO regulates over 97% of merchandise trade. The WTO secretariat is located In Geneva, Switzerland. The main role of the World Trade Organisation is to ensure that trade flows as smoothly, predictably and freely as possible.
In the WTO Barbados actively and continually pursue the advancement of Special and Differential Treatment and Small Economies issues.
Barbados underwent its third review of the trade policies and practices of Barbados between the 27th and 29th January 2014. The basis for the review is a report by the WTO Secretariat and a report by the Government of Barbados. The first Trade Policy Review was conducted in June 2002. Each member of the WTO must undergo periodic reviews of their trade policies.