International organizations are important actors in the critical episodes of international politics, with power in mediation, dispute resolution, peace keeping, applying sanctions and others. They also help in managing various key areas of international concern, from global health policy to the monetary policies around the world (Abbott and Snidal, 1998). An international organization can be defined as ‘an institutional agreement between members of an international system in order to achieve objectives according to systemic conditions, reflecting attributes, aspirations and concerns of its members’ (Hanrieder, 1966) and what gives the basic rule of them is the sovereignty of the nation-state (Barkin and Cronin, 2009).
In terms of the concept of global governance promoted by the international organizations, this was originally based on raw power, but has evolved to legitimacy and customs (Keohane and Nye, 2001). The practice of protectionism exists in the real life of international trade in different degrees. In order to break through the trade barriers and to promote non-discriminatory international trade, The General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) was established in 1947, and subsequently developed into the World Trade Organization (WTO) in 1995. As an integral part of the Bretton Woods system, the establishment of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), is responsible to administer the international monetary system and operates as a central bank for central banks. The goal of IMF is to provide economic development that benefits poor people in developing countries. IMF also provides “technical assistance”, or expert advice to assist governments making specific sectors of their economies, more efficient and relevant to national development goals.
The European Economic Community, which was similar in nature to GATT, was created in 1957 by six European countries, viz. Belgium, France, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, and West Germany to form a common market. Later on, with other European countries joined in, it was further expanded and developed to the existing European Union (EU) with 28 member nations. North American Free Trade Association (NAFTA) came into force in 1994 and consists of the USA, Canada and Mexico. These three countries have agreed to abolish tariffs between themselves in the hope that increased trade and cooperation will follow (Sloman & Garratt, 2010).