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World Trade Organization — Latest news
  • Items proposed for consideration at the next meeting of Dispute Settlement Body
    The WTO Secretariat has circulated a meeting notice and list of items proposed for the next meeting, on 28 May 2018, of the Dispute Settlement Body, which consists of all WTO members and oversees legal disputes among them. The meeting notice is circulated in the form of a document officially called an “airgram”.

  • DG Azevêdo calls on APEC members to help address challenges in global trade
    Addressing a meeting of APEC trade ministers in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea, on 25 May, Director-General Roberto Azevêdo called on ministers to address rising trade tensions and to step up efforts to advance the WTO’s work in a number of areas. During their session on ‘Supporting the Multilateral Trading System’, which had a thematic focus on the digital economy, the Director-General also updated ministers on ongoing debates in Geneva following the WTO’s 11th Ministerial Conference (MC11) in Buenos Aires.

  • DG Azevêdo in Papua New Guinea: ‘WTO gives smaller economies the platform to succeed’
    Director-General Roberto Azevêdo visited Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea, on 24 May, meeting with Minister Rimbink Pato to discuss how trade can continue to serve the country in the years to come. The Director-General noted the importance of the WTO in giving smaller economies like Papua New Guinea the support and the platform they need to succeed in global markets. They discussed the role of trade in relation to recovery from natural disasters, the sustainability of oceans, and building a more inclusive global economy. The Director-General welcomed Papua New Guinea’s ratification of the Trade Facilitation Agreement, which could potentially cut...

  • India initiates WTO dispute complaint against US steel, aluminium duties
    India has requested WTO dispute consultations with the United States regarding US duties on certain imported steel and aluminium products. The request was circulated to WTO members on 23 May.

  • WTO-PIFS Regional Workshop on MC11 Outcomes and Way Forward
  • DG Azevêdo in Fiji: ‘WTO vital to help Pacific region respond to its unique challenges and opportunities’
    In a speech at the University of the South Pacific (USP) in Suva, Fiji, on 21 May 2018, Director-General Roberto Azevêdo said that trade and trade policy had a crucial role to play in supporting Fiji and other Pacific Islands to meet the big challenges ahead, ‘whether it’s meeting the urgent imperative of development, or delivering improved resilience and recovery from natural disasters’, and he stressed that the WTO would also help in meeting the big opportunities on the horizon as well — from boosting tourism, to creating a framework for more sustainable fisheries, to realising the benefits of improved...

  • DDG Wolff: WTO accession has served as a key engine for economic transformation
    WTO membership assists in ongoing transformations of domestic economies for their own benefit and to improve the net benefits for all, said Deputy Director-General Alan Wolff in an address to the Astana Economic Forum in Kazakhstan on 18 May. Here is his full speech.

  • DDG Wolff: Regional agreements must contribute to advancing multilateral trade
    It is vitally important to ensure that bilateral and regional integration arrangements do not fall outside of the global system, but contribute to its advancement, said Deputy Director-General Alan Wolff in an address to the Astana Economic Forum in Kazakhstan on 17 May. Here is what he said:

  • WTO members complete first cluster of meetings for fisheries subsidies negotiations since MC11
    WTO members in the Negotiating Group on Rules on 14-17 May held their first substantive cluster of meetings on fisheries subsidies since the 11th Ministerial Conference (MC11) in line with their programme of work planned for May to July. Members exchanged views and information on support for capital and operating costs of fishing, and related policies, in the context of ongoing work on disciplining subsidies that enhance or maintain fishing capacity or contribute to overcapacity and overfishing. Members also continued the work begun in 2017 to streamline negotiating texts in preparation for a return to text-based negotiations.

  • Strong trade growth continues but momentum may soften in Q2, trade indicator suggests
    The strong rate of trade expansion is likely to continue, while slowing slightly in the second quarter of 2018, according to the WTO’s latest World Trade Outlook Indicator (WTOI) released on 17 May. The WTOI’s current value of 101.8 remains above the baseline value of 100 for the index but below the previous value of 102.3, which suggests continued solid trade growth in the second quarter of 2018 but probably at a somewhat slower pace than in the first quarter. The recent dip in the WTOI reflects declines in component indices for export orders in particular but also for air...

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