The decision not to participate in or conclude a trade agreement is also a signal. That is why the collapse of the Doha negotiations in December 2008 was so resounding. This seemed to be a signal that governments are withdrawing from ambitious attempts to open up global markets. At a time when the collapse of confidence in global financial markets has dragged the global economy into a deep recession, the signal seems particularly significant and bleak. The G-20 has been criticized for not being transparent, encouraging trade agreements, strengthening big business, slowing the fight against climate change, and failing to address social inequalities and global threats to democracy. Williams called for G20 members to take small, tangible steps for non-discriminatory trade liberalization. His argument is that there will be no mechanism to move towards less than greater discrimination if there is no multilateral agreement to reduce trade barriers and if the trend is towards discriminatory regional agreements. He therefore believes that the G20 should take progressive measures to reduce preferential margins and phase out discrimination in international trade. The results of all previous GATT and WTO negotiations determine the starting point of the Doha Round. In previous cycles, the parties that have liberalized the most have been able to reach a roughly reciprocal agreement in the presence of a few parasitists across other countries, because trade in the open countries was not significant enough to prevent any party from reaching a domestic political situation satisfactory to them, so that it could continue to ratify and implement the agreement. However, this has allowed some parties to have a much higher average tariff level than others: for non-agricultural goods, the average linked tariff rate is only 3.5% for high-income countries and 19.1% for developing countries that do not use LDCs; For agricultural products, the average linked tariff rate is 31.9% for high-income countries and 53% for developing countries without LDCs. [88] The difference is smaller if applied instead of comparing related rates, but the ranking is the same.

With regard to trade in services, protection rates are more difficult to quantify, as protection is the result of a large number of instruments, but it is clear that the degree of liberalization implemented under the GATS commitments of the Uruguay cycle has varied widely from country to country. [89] Political scientists and economists who model governments` behaviour in trade agreements have pointed out that reciprocity and non-discrimination are essential conditions for the viability of trade agreements. [86] All of these requirements are the degree of predictable market access opportunities that exporters derive from the agreement, which undermines their propensity for political support.