The Uruguay Round of trade negotiations within the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade that has been under way since 1986 includes discussions on liberalization of trade in services in addition to trade in goods. The inclusion of services for the first time in GATT negotiations reflects their increasing importance in international trade, especially over the last decade. Financial services in general, and banking services in particular, are now a significant component of international trade in services, in part because of the growing interdependence of national financial markets.