accessions

Trade for Peace Week

The WTO is hosting the first edition of the Trade for Peace Week with ten virtual panel sessions that will explore the nexus between trade and peace, focussing on fragile and conflict-affected countries which aim to use trade and economic integration to promote sustainable and inclusive peace.

Virtual event

Monday, 30 November 2020

SESSION 1 - 12:30 – 14:00 CET

webcasting

TECH IN TRADE FOR PEACE
In collaboration with the UN Technology Bank

To participate, please register here.

In the midst of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, tech is everywhere. All the way from how we live, communicate and trade. But how is technology powered by the creative force of entrepreneurs shaping a future for peace? Meet the entrepreneurs who are building a resilient pathway for growth and greater opportunities for all, right from the heart of some of the most conflicted zones.

Moderator:

  • Ms. Angeles Cortesi, Programme Manager,  UN Technology Bank for the Least Developed Countries (UN-TBLDC)
    Biography

Speakers:

  • Mr. Joshua Setipa, Managing Director,  UN Technology Bank for the Least Developed Countries (UN-TBLDC)
    Biography
  • Ms. Roya Mahboob, CEO, Afghan Citadel Software Company
    Biography
  • Mr. Ahmed Elmurtada, Managing Director, 249 Startup
    Biography
  • Mr. Mohamed Elzakey, Co-Founder & CEO, Tirhal
    Biography
  • Mr. Luther Jeke, Director, iCampus Liberia
    Biography

SESSION 2: OPENING SESSION - 15:30 – 17:00 CET

webcasting

TRADE FOR PEACE: LEVERAGING CROSS-CUTTING COOPERATION AND PARTNERSHIPS

To participate, please register here.

The Trade for Peace Week is an opportunity to forge new partnerships and collaborations within the trade, peace and humanitarian communities, in order to restore the primacy of multilateral cooperation based on a set of common values. This session aims to introduce the Trade for Peace Initiative to a wider audience, as well as formally initiate conversations between the trade, peace and humanitarian communities on what is happening on the ground, what works, and what needs to be done.

Moderator:

  • Ms. María Pérez-Esteve, Counsellor, Accessions Division, WTO
    Biography

Speakers:

  • H.E. Dr. Jose Ramos Horta, Noble Peace Prize Laureate, Former President of Timor-Leste, Special Envoy of g7+ (video message)
    Biography
  • Ambassador Alan Wm. Wolff, Deputy Director-General, WTO
    Biography
    Speech
  • Dr. Gilles Carbonnier, Vice President, International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC)
    Biography
  • Dr. Henk-Jan Brinkman, Chief, Peacebuilding Strategy and Partnership Branch, Peacebuilding Support Office, Department of Political and Peacebuilding Affairs, United Nations
    Biography
  • Ms. Noura Tan, Rapporteur, GPW20 Track Harnessing the Economy for Peace, Geneva Peacebuilding Platform
    Biography

Tuesday, 1 December 2020

SESSION 3 - 10:30 – 12:00 CET

webcasting

BUSINESS FOR PEACE
In collaboration with the International Trade Centre and the International Chamber of Commerce

To participate, please register here.

A thriving private sector is key to economic recovery and has the potential to influence peace processes. Against the backdrop of the COVID-19 crisis that has exasperated the challenges that conflict-affected and fragile countries are facing, advocacy and support for the private sector has become even more essential. Promoting entrepreneurship and creating opportunities and market linkages for small and medium-sized enterprises, including those led by women, youth and people displaced by conflict, is essential for reaching economic stability, while addressing the economic root causes of many conflicts.

This session provides insights into the role of the private sector in contributing to peace and security from different angles, such as: the importance of bringing the voice of the private sector to the policymaking process, including with regard to WTO accession-related reforms; staying in business and creating businesses to provide income opportunities for the most affected communities; attracting international investors and buyers to (re-)engage in conflict-affected and fragile states.

Moderator:

  • Ms. Hannah Viviers, News Anchor, CGTN Africa
    Biography

Speakers:

  • Ms. Pamela Coke-Hamilton, Executive Director, International Trade Centre
    Biography
  • Mr. John W.H. Denton AO, Secretary General, International Chamber of Commerce
    Biography
  • Mr. Simon Akuei Deng, Secretary General, South Sudan National Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Agriculture (SSNCCIA)
  • Ms. Maissa Abou Adal Ghanem, Board Member and Chief Sustainability Officer, Holdal Group, Lebanon
    Biography
  • Mr. Sanzar Kakar, Chairman, Afghanistan Holding Group
    Biography
  • Ms. Alice Bosley, Co-founder and Executive Director, Five One Labs, Iraq (Kurdistan region)
    Biography
  • Mr. Mahmud Johnson, Founder & CEO, J-Palm, Liberia
    Biography

SESSION 4 - 15:00 – 16:30 CET

webcasting

TRADE, CONFLICT AND PEACE: EMPIRICAL EVIDENCE
In collaboration with the WTO Economic Research and Statistics Division

To participate, please register here.

Conventional wisdom suggests that larger trade flows lead to more peaceful relations, while economic literature has shown that the impact of trade on international conflict might depend on the geographical structure of trade, the balance between bilateral and multilateral openness, the structure of comparative advantage, and trade costs. In the context of domestic conflict, while more open economies should be less inclined to civil conflict, international trade could also act as a source of revenue that finances conflict. Relatedly, civil conflict might create dependence on primary sector exports, but is the reverse also true? This session will discuss the empirical evidence on the following questions: Does international trade reduce international conflict? Can trade openness deter the outbreak of intra-national (i.e. civil) conflict?

Moderator:

  • Mr. Cosimo Beverelli, Research Economist, Economic Research and Statistics Division, WTO
    Biography

Speakers:

  • Ms. Michelle Garfinkel, Professor of Economics, University of California-Irvine
    Biography
  • Ms. Anke Hoeffler, Professor of Political Science, University of Konstanz
    Biography
  • Mr. Serge Stroobants, Director, Europe & MENA region, Institute for Economics and Peace
    Biography
  • Mr. Mathias Thoenig, Professor of Economics, Faculty of Business and Economics, University of Lausanne
    Biography

Wednesday, 2 December 2020

SESSION 5 - 10:30 - 12:00 CET

webcasting

TRADE FOR PEACE THROUGH DECENT JOB CREATION
In collaboration with the International Labour Organization

To participate, please register here.

The purpose of this session is to advocate for the importance of trade and decent jobs in promoting peace in fragile and conflict affected countries through multilateral cooperation between international institutions (i.e. International Labour Organization, World Trade Organization and United Nations Development Programme). It will showcase, through real-life experiences, how trade and decent jobs can contribute to national, regional and global peace and security. The proposed speakers for the panel will be representing both policy makers and practitioners with operational-level experiences in WTO accession negotiations, labour policy formulation, and peacebuilding. The panel discussion will propose concrete recommendations for navigating the triangle of trade, jobs and peace.

Moderator:

  • Ms Roberta Piermartini, Chief of Trade Cost Analysis Section, Economic Research and Statistics Division, WTO
    Biography

Speakers:

  • Ms. Mito Tsukamoto, Chief, Development and Investment, Employment Policy Dept, ILO Geneva
    Biography
  • Mr. Mozammil Shinwari, former Deputy Minister of Commerce and Industry of Afghanistan and Chief Negotiator for WTO Accession
    Biography
  • Mr.Matthias Thorns, Deputy Secretary General, International Organisation of Employers (IOE)
    Biography
  • Mr. Omar Faruk Osman, General Secretary, Federation of Somali Trade Unions (FESTU)
    Biography
  • Ms. Luisa Bernal, Policy Specialist, UNDP Geneva
    Biography

SESSION 6 - 15:00 - 16:30 CET

webcasting

TRADE FOR PEACE IN RECONSTRUCTION FOR IRAQ AND LIBYA
In collaboration with the World Bank

To participate, please register here.

In 2004, Iraq and Libya applied for WTO membership and are still in the process of accession. Since then, both countries have greatly suffered from fragility, conflict and political instability. Is peace enough to restore prosperity and economic recovery to Iraq and Libya? This panel will address how trade and economic integration for Iraq and Libya can be used as a tool to rebuild their fragile economies and help promote sustainable and inclusive peace. It will also emphasize the importance of WTO membership as a tool to help lock in domestic reforms, attract investment and reap the benefits of a rules-based multilateral trading system.

Moderator:

  • Mr. Wael Mansour, Senior Country Economist for Iraq, World Bank
    Biography

Opening remarks:

  • Mr. Antonio Nucifora, Practice Manager, Trade and Regional Integration, World Bank
    Biography
  • Speakers:

    • Mr. Michael Ferrantino, Lead Trade Economist, Macroeconomics, Trade and Investment Global Practice, World Bank
      Biography
    • Ms. Nidhal Sebri, Director, Ministry of Trade, Iraq
      Biography
    • Ambassador Tamim Baiou, Permanent Representative of Libya to the United Nations Office in Geneva
      Biography
    • Mr. Michael Schaeffer, Resident Representative for Libya, World Bank
      Biography

Thursday, 3 December 2020

SESSION 7 - 10:30 – 12:00 CET

webcasting

ECONOMIC PEACEBUILDING IN SOMALIA: INTEGRATING PEACE IN TRADE POLICIES
In collaboration with Interpeace

To participate, please register here.

A thriving economy is essential to stability and building lasting peace. Ensuring that peacebuilding is at the centre of economic development and trade policies could contribute to greater policy coherence for development and support economic growth that will help societies and countries emerge from violence and war. Somalia is one of the countries emerging from prolonged conflict and is now focused on rebuilding and economic recovery. As a result of its geographical location, Somalia was historically a thriving centre for international trade and commerce.

In this session we will discuss the role of trade in building and sustaining peace and how trade policies can be harnessed to prevent conflict, build resilience and contribute to inclusive and sustainable development.

Moderator:

  • Mr. Ahmed Abdullahi, Country Coordinator - Somalia, Interpeace
    Biography

Speakers:

  • H.E. Mr. Mahdi Mohammed Gulaid Khadar, Deputy Prime Minister, Somalia
    Biography
  • Mr. Scott Weber, President, Interpeace
    Biography
  • H.E. Mr. Staffan Tillander, Ambassador of Sweden to Somalia
    Biography
  • Ms. Maika Oshikawa, Director, Accessions Division, WTO

SESSION 8 - 14:30 – 16:00 CET

webcasting

YEMEN - WHERE TRADE, HUMANITARIAN AND PEACE ACTIVITIES MEET ON THE GROUND

To participate, please register here.

Yemen's WTO accession process (2000-2014) provided the impetus for solidifying domestic economic reforms and poverty reduction efforts. However, plagued by conflict, cholera, famine, and COVID-19, Yemen is suffering from a precarious supply of food, water and medicine due to delays in commercial flows. The obstruction of trade routes, coupled with an unstable macroeconomic environment, has heightened the urgency of addressing trade bottlenecks that are paralyzing Yemen's economy and livelihoods and acting as barriers to humanitarian assistance. In recognition of this challenge, this session will bring together relevant stakeholders to rethink trade as a humanitarian and peacebuilding priority in Yemen.

Moderator:

  • Dr. Achim Wennmann, Executive Coordinator, Geneva Peacebuilding Platform
    Biography

Speakers:

  • H.E. Mr. Hans Grundberg, Ambassador of the European Union to Yemen
    Biography
  • H.E. Mr. Saadaldeen Talib, former Minister of Industry and Trade of Yemen and Chief Negotiator for WTO Accession
    Biography
  • Ms. Asmaa Shalabi, Section Chief, Middle East and North Africa, Operations and Advocacy Division, UN Office for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA)
    Biography

Friday, 4 December 2020

SESSION 9 - 10:00 - 11:30 CET

webcasting

TRADE IN TIMES OF COVID-19: EXPERIENCES OF FRAGILE AND CONFLICT AFFECTED STATES
In collaboration with the g7+ Secretariat and the g7+ WTO Accessions Group

To participate, please register here.

As the COVID-19 pandemic unfolded in 2020, fragile and conflict affected countries are among the hardest hit by its consequences as the most vulnerable. The pandemic and the counter measures aimed at combatting the spread of the virus have caused an upsurge of conflict, unemployment, social unrest and poverty. While insurgent groups continue in their violence, peace-making efforts are often undermined. The session will discuss the experiences of these countries and the steps necessary to mitigate the effect of the pandemic and to build resilience, including the need to minimize trade disruptions by preserving free trade and to pursue WTO membership as part of response to COVID-19.

Moderator:

  • Ambassador Mohammad Qurban Haqjo, Permanent Representative of Afghanistan to the WTO and Chairperson of the g7+ WTO Accessions Group
    Biography

Speakers:

  • H.E. Francis Mustapha Kai-Kai, Minister of Planning and Economic Development of Sierra Leone and g7+ Chair
    Biography
  • Hon. Mawine G. Diggs, Minister of Commerce and Industry, Liberia
  • Hon. Jeremiah Manele, Minister of Foreign Affairs and External Trade, Solomon Islands
    Biography
  • Ms. Susanna Moorehead, Chair of the Development Assistance Committee, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)

SESSION 10 - 14:30 - 16:00 CET

webcasting

USING TRADE INTEGRATION TO PROMOTE PEACE IN THE HORN OF AFRICA: CASES OF AFCFTA AND WTO MEMBERSHIP

To participate, please register here.

Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, African countries are facing decreased demand, falling commodity prices and disrupted supply chains. Deeper trade integration through the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA) and WTO accessions can help African countries strengthen their regional and global trade channels, mitigate the negative impact on trade and promote peace across the continent – a mission even more crucial now than at the conception of the AfCFTA in 2018. All the African countries currently acceding to the WTO have signed the Agreement, signaling their conviction that WTO membership and AfCFTA participation are compatible and mutually beneficial. In the backdrop of delays to the implementation of the AfCFTA and contemporary challenges to the achievement of the WTO mandate, this session brings together experts to present actionable steps forward to promote peace through trade integration.

Moderator:

    • Mr. Axel M. Addy, former Minister of Commerce & Industry of Liberia and Chief Negotiator for WTO  Accession
      Biography

Speakers:

  • Ambassador Alan Wm. Wolff, Deputy Director-General, WTO
  • Ambassador Albert M. Muchanga, Commissioner for Trade and Industry, African Union (TBC)
  • Mr. Stephen N. Karingi, Director, Regional Integration and Trade Division, United Nations Economic for Africa (UNECA)
    Biography
  • Mr. Mamo Mihretu, Senior Advisor to the Prime Minister and Chief Trade Negotiator, Ethiopia
    Biography
  • Hon. Agak Achuil, Undersecretary, Ministry of Trade and Industry, South-Sudan Representative of Sudan (TBD)
    Biography

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