Pascal Lamy on Global Governance

The Director-General of the World Trade Organization (WTO), Pascal Lamy, yesterday delivered a speech on global governance at Bocconi University in Milan, Italy. He discussed the deficiencies of the global governance systems today and looked at the European Union as a new governance paradigm. “The reality is that the end of the cold war caught everyone by surprise,” Lamy said. “It was the end of a bipolar world. A new world order was being born. And yet there was not enough thinking and discussion about its governance structures. There was never a Bretton Woods Conference or a San Francisco Conference post 1989. As a result global governance structures did not adjust. And here lies the root of many of today’s problems. Global challenges need global solutions and these can only come with the right global governance, which today, 20 years later, remains too weak.”

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2 Responses to “Pascal Lamy on Global Governance”


  1. 1 Marcus Chau Hon Wai 04/12/2009 at 12:49 am

    I am pretty interest in this perspective — consider EU to be a possible model to construct global governance institution. Since what we see in EU today is peace and collaboration. European states are so united and so ordered under the umbrella of EU, but they still enjoy high degree of sovereignty.

    States get respected, trading is smooth, members agree on things. How beautiful the world will be if the model fits. But I don’t think that can be possible.

    I would say, the success of EU greatly relates to simlar culture. The boundary amoung states is not easy to break down as they share similar blood, similar religion, shared history, shared ideal on economic system, and so on.

    So the problem of the world is states at different regions do not tend to collaborate easily. For instance US and China, the conflict of interest is so deep-rooted that collaborate need great effort to realize.

  2. 2 Wong Ching Hung 06/12/2009 at 6:40 pm

    Although I am not very convinced by Mr. Lamy’s link between the abolition of Cold War and the world’s insufficient preparation towards global governance, I think it is encouraging to see a direction suggested by him as getting EU be the drive for global governance.

    We are now talking about the global scale, which we can all imagine how big the scope is and how difficult to actually achieve anything with unanimous consensus.

    I would go for something small in the initial stage, for other big powers like US and China, as suggested by Marcus above, are too difficult to collaborate on the grounds of common interests. EU, though having internal problems, is a comparatively more united group of countries in the world. There are 27 countries in total, including UK, Germany, France. If they can start to draw the map on global governance, carrying out in their sphere first, the other countries in the world can follow it as a model. After all, it is more convincing to have a strong power to initiate and bear the responsibility first.


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