Why the WTO Has Been Caught in Trade-War Crossfire

After a quarter century serving as the global arbiter of commerce, the World Trade Organization is facing an existential moment in an era of rising protectionism. The U.S. under President Donald Trump called for a fundamental reset at the institution and sabotaged its ability to settle disputes. A key U.S. goal at the WTO has been to challenge China’s state-led approach to trade and investment, an aim shared by President-elect Joe Biden. Acknowledging that the WTO has failed to adapt to shifts i