Launch of the g7+ WTO Accessions Group

Public Dialogue Session
Theme: Welcoming Development for Post-Conflict and Fragile Economies Through WTO Accessions

Background

The g7+ WTO Accessions Group is a sub-group of the larger g7+ group, which is an association of fragile and conflict-affected states. The g7+ group was formed in 2010 with the objectives to seek for transition to the next stage of development to forge pathways out of fragility and conflict and to enable peer learning on how to achieve resilience and support between member countries. The group’s vision for peace and state building is set out in the Dili Declaration, agreed in April 2010. The motto of the g7+ is: “Nothing about us without us." Currently, Sierra Leone is the chair of the group.

Out of twenty members of the g7+, twelve are original WTO Members (Burundi, Central African Republic, Chad Cote d'Ivoire, Democratic Republic of Congo, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Haiti, Papua New Guinea, Sierra Leone, Solomon Islands and Togo), three are Article XII WTO Members (Afghanistan, Liberia, and Yemen), four are WTO acceding governments (Comoros, Sao Tome and Principe, Somalia and Timor-Leste) and one is a non-observer currently considering an application for WTO accession (South Sudan).

Led by Afghanistan and Liberia, the Trade Ministers from these latter eight countries officially inaugurated the g7+ WTO Accessions Group on 10 December 2017, on the margins of the 11th WTO Ministerial Conference (MC11) in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

The main objectives of the g7+ WTO Accessions Group are:

i. to facilitate the integration of post-conflict and fragile economies into the multilateral trading system through WTO accession-related reforms, including the establishment of credible economic and trade policy frameworks and institutions, and the promotion of transparency and good governance, based on international best practices; and,

ii. to support the efforts of the WTO acceding governments in the Group, including through information and experience sharing

The objectives of the Group are set in the Ministerial Declaration adopted at the first meeting of the Trade Ministers of the Group, on 10 December 2017. The declaration is available here.


Public Dialogue

In this Public Dialogue, Ministers of the members of the g7+ WTO Accessions Group shared perspectives on using WTO accession and post-accession as tool for developing conflict-affected and fragile economies, to forge pathways out of fragility and conflict. H.E. Ms. Susana Malcorra, Chair of the Eleventh WTO Ministerial Conference delivered opening keynote remarks. The session was moderated by Deputy Director General Alan Wm Wolff.

Programme – The g7+ WTO Accessions Group – Public Dialogue Session

"Welcoming Development for Post-Conflict and Fragile Economies through WTO Accessions"
10 December 2017, Hilton Hotel Convention Centre, Atlantico B 10:30-12:00

Moderator: Ambassador Alan Wm Wolff, WTO Deputy Director-General


10:30 – 10:45: Opening Keynote Remarks

  • H.E. Ms. Susana Malcorra, Chair of the Eleventh WTO Ministerial Conference

10:45 – 11:00: Outcome of the g7+ WTO Accessions Group Ministerial meeting

  • H.E. Mr. Humayoon Rasaw, Minister of Commerce of Industries, Afghanistan
  • H.E. Mr. Axel M. Addy, Minister of Commerce and Industry, Liberia

11:00 – 11:45: WTO accession as a tool for developing a post-conflict and fragile economy – "Davos-style" Panel Discussion

The Moderator will animate the panel discussion by posing specific questions to each Minister, followed by questions from the audience

Panelists:

  • H.E. Mr. Humayoon Rasaw, Minister of Commerce and Industries, Islamic Republic of Afghanistan
  • H.E. Mr. Sultan Chouzour, Ambassador, Permanent Representative to the United Nations Office in Geneva, Comoros
  • H.E. Mr. Axel M. Addy, Minister of Commerce and Industry, Republic of Liberia
  • H.E. Ms. Yvette Stevens, Ambassador, Permanent Representative to the WTO, Sierra Leone
  • H.E. Ms. Khadra Ahmed Dualeh, Minister of Commerce and Industry, Somalia
  • H.E. Mr. Akesh Chol Ahou Ayok, Ambassador, Deputy Permanent Representative to the United Nations Office in Geneva, South Sudan
  • H.E. Mr. Estanislau Da Conceicao Aleixo Maria Da Silva, Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries, Timor-Leste
  • H.E. Dr. Mohammed Abdulwahid Almaitami, Minister of Industry and Trade, Yemen

Followed by Open Discussion


11:45 – 12:00: Conclusion and Way Forward


 

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