The World Trade Organisation should not become a world government, director-general Mike Moore said on the first day of the Pacific Economic Co-operation Council's (PECC) general meeting. Many speakers at the 14th PECC meeting in Hong Kong yesterday stressed the urgency of better managing the globalisation process so that its benefits were spread more evenly. Mr Moore said trade liberalisation had promoted development and increased living standards, which had led people to demand more in areas such as the environment and the law. However, it was not up to the WTO to help countries redistribute extra income received through trade liberalisation. 'Trade ought not to be an end in itself,' Mr Moore said. 'How the benefits . . . [are distributed] is the role of the sovereign government. We must never believe it's our job to tell [them] how to spend their tax revenue. 'I don't think you want a world government, these are the responsibilities of sovereign governments.' Mr Moore, who described himself as the 'guardian or custodian of the multilateral system', said cutting all barriers to trade would be like adding economies the size of China to the global economy. Mr Moore also said regional and bilateral trade deals could be beneficial if they were 'stepping stones to access the multilateral system'. 'The dangers are when they are a substitute for the multilateral system.' Mr Moore admitted he had been 'scared some of the oxygen would leave Geneva' to go into bilateral trade arrangements if the WTO ministerial meeting in Doha had failed to launch a new round of trade talks. 'Because everyone wants to do a deal with North America, but who wants to do a deal with some of our most vulnerable members?' he said. Referring to China's WTO accession in Doha, he said: 'It would have been worth going to Doha just for that.' China's entry has given 1.3 billion people secure, predictable and non-discriminatory access to markets in 142 countries, committing the nation to huge domestic policy reforms. 'China's leaders have told me it is the biggest decision they have made in 50 years,' he said, adding that China's accession was 'good for China and good for everyone in the world'. 'Heroic efforts' were being put into place to overcome the difficulties, he said. 'Even in mature market economies, there are always problems of counterfeiting. No market has an absolutely transparent system . . . but I believe China is committed, [as is] its leadership.'