This article offers an account and analysis of the World Trade Organization's (WTO) 7th Ministerial Conference – a meeting that, although ‘successfully’ concluded, failed to address a series of key issues in the increasingly moribund Doha Round of trade negotiations. We begin with an account of the meeting that offers an insight into the ‘colour’ of these biennial gatherings. The article then identifies and explores the primary consequences of pursuing an agenda designed not to focus on the core issues in the Doha Round but instead to ensure that the meeting is a ‘success’. Here we draw attention to the increasingly problematic nature of the Round's ‘development’ content, the thorny issue of agricultural liberalization and the problems posed for developing countries when their industrial counterparts pursue trade objectives through regional and bilateral means. In the concluding section, we consider the way forward for both the Doha Round and the WTO as an institution.