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WTO Corner: Plurilaterals legality, investment facilitation

Plurilateral or ‘Joint Statement’ initiatives launched in 2017 to modernise rules in the trading system start maturing. Now members face a battle over having them established in the World Trade Organization treaty framework. India and South Africa claim Joint Statement initiative deals are illegal In December 2017, a large group …

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WTO Corner: E-commerce text, investment facilitation, no TRIPS waiver

Some developments at the WTO this week…. Negotiators adopt second version of e-commerce agreement draft text Many observers note that negotiations on a text that would set rules for digital trade in the 21st Century have had difficulties making meaningful headway this autumn. Eighty-six WTO members have been looking in …

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WTO Corner: Kenya, Saudi, UK candidates for top job, EUI survey, Japan, investment facilitation

Three candidates from African continent So now it’s official. There are now three candidates from the African continent vying for the WTO’s director-general job. Kenya submitted the candidacy of Amina Mohamed, a high-profile Kenyan politician and a former envoy to the WTO who hosted the last ministerial meeting in Nairobi …

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WTO corner: Trade data, WTO DG nominations, investment facilitation, e-commerce, Africa

COVID-19 trade collapse “could have been worse” says WTO’s Azevêdo The WTO released fresh data on global trade flows during the pandemic. Initial estimates for the second quarter, when the virus and associated lockdown measures affected a large share of the global population, indicate a year‑on‑year drop of around 18.5%,” …

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WTO Investment Facilitation talks – what they are all about

More than 70 WTO Members will spend the next five months trying to negotiate new rules on how governments regulate investment and treat investors in their countries as part of the ‘Structured Discussions on Investment Facilitation’. The rules they aim to agree primarily focus on predictability, transparency, simplicity and equity …