parliamentarians

2018 Annual session of the Parliamentary conference on the WTO
"WTO: The way forward"

Organized jointly by the Inter-Parliamentary Union and the European Parliament

Geneva, WTO Headquarters - Room CR1

 

Thursday 6 December
(43rd session of the Steering Committee in camera from 9 a.m. to 12.30 p.m. at the IPU Headquarters)

10:00 – 18:00

Registration of participants

14:30 – 15:00

Inaugural session

Video

  • Ms. Margaret Mensah-Williams, Chairperson of the National Council of Namibia, co-Chair of the Steering Committee of the Parliamentary Conference on the WTO
  • Mr. Fabio Massimo Castaldo, Vice President of the European Parliament
  • Ambassador Junichi Ihara, Permanent Representative of Japan to the WTO, Chairperson of the WTO General Council

15:00 – 16:00

Hearing with the WTO Deputy Director-General, Mr. Xiaozhun Yi

Video

16:00 – 18:30

Challenges and opportunities facing the WTO

Dialogue with senior WTO negotiators and officials

Guest Speakers

  • Ambassador Dennis Shea, Permanent Representative of the United States to the WTO
  • Ambassador Eloi Laourou, Permanent Representative of Benin to the United Nations Office and other international Organizations in Geneva, Chairperson of Trade Policy Review Body at the WTO
  • Ambassador Sunanta Kangvalkulkij, Permanent Representative of Thailand to the WTO, Chairwoman of the Dispute Settlement Body
  • Mr. Jesse G. Kreiner, Senior Counsellor, Rules Division of the World Trade Organization (WTO)

18:30 – 19:30

Reception at the WTO

20:00 – 22:00

Steering Committee (in camera meeting, IPU Headquarters)

Friday 7 December

9:30 – 12:30

WTO 2030?

New and disquieting developments - including emerging trade wars, the growing trend towards unilateral measures and the looming paralysis of the WTO Dispute Settlement Body - are putting the multilateral rules-based system at risk. What WTO do we envisage for 2030? What are the solutions ahead? What can parliamentarians do to bolster free and fair trade generally and in the WTO in particular?

Presentation of reports and interactive debate

Rapporteurs:

  • Mr. Jean Bizet, Senator (France)
  • Mr. Paul Rübig, Member of the European Parliament

Moderator

  • Ms. Margaret Mensah-Williams, Chairperson of the National Council of Namibia, co-Chair of the Steering Committee of the Parliamentary Conference on the WTO

12:30 – 14:30

Lunch break

14:30 – 17:30

How can technological development benefit the people?

New technologies develop very rapidly. Digitalization, robots, artificial intelligence, the internet of things and 3D printing will revolutionize how we produce, work, move and consume. The world economy will need a trade policy framework that embraces change and responds to the many fast-paced transformation processes. Will the WTO and its members be able to deliver on the new challenges? How can we make sure that technological development benefits the people? How can parliamentarians contribute to achieving this?

Presentation of reports and interactive debate

Rapporteurs:

  • Ms. Dieh Mandiaye Ba, Member of Parliament (Senegal)
  • Ms. Emma McClarkin, Member of the European Parliament

17:30 – 18:00

Closing session: adoption of the outcome document

Rapporteur suggested:

  • Ms. Inmaculada Rodrigues-Piñero, Member of the European Parliament

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