The workshop gave participants the opportunity to share their experiences regarding the benefits of the revised WTO Agreement on Government Procurement (GPA) adopted in 2012. The revised Agreement — also known as “GPA 2012” — is based on the principles of non-discrimination, transparency and procedural fairness.

The participants comprised government officials with experience in trade and government procurement policy matters from 45 economies.(1)

In opening the workshop on 25 October, WTO Deputy Director-General Anabel González noted the special character of this year's workshop as “the WTO celebrates the 25th anniversary of the WTO GPA, which entered into force in 1996, and the 40th anniversary of the first-ever version of the GPA”. She highlighted the vital role of government procurement in “building infrastructure and delivering essential public services for the benefit of citizens, including health, education and national defence”, and the “undeniable development dimension” of sound and efficient procurement procedures. Information on the GPA's dual anniversary can be found here.

Participants delved into the implementation of GPA 2012, the accession process (benefits and potential challenges, including the flexibilities available to developing countries), the work of the Committee on Government Procurement and the benefits of observership. The Agreement's parties and observers can be found here.

The workshop also explored the link between government procurement, trade growth, economic development and good governance and familiarized participants with the complementarities between GPA 2012 and other international instruments and regional trade agreements. Also covered were topics such as sustainable procurement, the participation of small and medium-sized enterprises in public procurement markets, e-procurement, emergency procurement and the role of government procurement in helping achieve public health outcomes. An online discussion on the process of acceding to the GPA 2012 took place on 23 November. It can be viewed here.  

The workshop benefited from the expertise of numerous policy practitioners and experts from national authorities, international organizations and academia, as well as the WTO Secretariat. This is the second time this annual event has been held virtually in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.


  1. Angola; Argentina; Armenia; Belize; Brazil; Burkina Faso; China; Costa Rica; Côte d'Ivoire; Cuba; Dominican Republic; Ecuador; El Salvador; Georgia; Guatemala; Haiti; India; Iran; Kazakhstan; Kyrgyz Republic; Malawi; Malaysia; Mali; Mexico; Moldova; Mongolia; Morocco; Niger; Nigeria; North Macedonia; Peru; Russian Federation; Saint Kitts and Nevis; Sri Lanka; Suriname; Chinese Taipei; Thailand; Timor Leste; Togo; Trinidad and Tobago; Turkey; Ukraine; Uzbekistan; Zambia; Zimbabwe. back to text




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