Issues covered by the WTO’s committees and agreements

Seminar on eCommerce for Development

9 December 2016 — Room CR1 — 10.00

The Friends of eCommerce for Development (Argentina, Costa Rica, Kenya, Nigeria, Pakistan and Sri Lanka) are organizing a one-day seminar on 'eCommerce and Development' on 9 December.

The objectives of the activity are to:

  • debate opportunities and challenges for least-developed countries (LDCs) and developing countries in eCommerce
  • help reduce the knowledge gap between developed and developing countries/LDCs in eCommerce and the digital economy
  • reinforce the centrality of eCommerce as an engine for development for micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) in developing countries/LDCs
  •  discuss mechanisms for capacity building among developing countries, especially LDCs, to better understand the application of technology to trade needs
  •  showcase success stories from developing countries/LDCs, their achievements and constraints.



10.00 — Opening session

    i) Welcome and overview by H.E. Eng. Khurram Dastgir Khan, Federal Minister for Commerce, Government of Pakistan

    ii) Opening address by H.E. Mr. Alexander Mora, Minister of Foreign Trade, Government of Costa Rica

    iii) Opening remarks by Mr. Roberto Azevêdo, Director-General, World Trade Organization

    iv) Address by Mr. Houlin Zhao, Secretary-General, International Telecommunication Union

    v) Address by Dr. Mukhisa Kituyi, Secretary-General, United Nations Conference on Trade and Development

    vi) Address by Ms. Arancha Gonzalez, Executive-Director, International Trade Centre


Moderator: H.E. Dr. Syed Taugir Shah, Ambassador of Pakistan to the WTO

11.30-11.45 Coffee break (Venue: CR1 lobby)

11.45-13.00 — Session-I: eCommerce Opportunities and Challenges for Developing/Least Developed Countries:

  • Digital Dividends and Prospects for Developing/Least Developed Countries — Mr. Jose Guilherme Reis, Practice Manager for Trade, World Bank
  • eTrade for ALL — Mr. Torbjorn Fredriksson, Chief of the ICT Analysis Section, Science, Technology and ICT Branch, Division on Technology and Logistics, UNCTAD
  • Presentation “Challenges and benefits of E-Commerce for developing countries — what role for the WTO” by Mr. Shishir Priyadarshi, Director of Development Division, World Trade Organization
  • eCommerce and Gender — Ms Hang Tran, World Trade Organization
  • Q&A

Moderator: H.E. Mr. Alvaro Ceder Molinari, Ambassador of Costa Rica to the WTO

13.00-14.30 Lunch break (Venue: CR1 lobby)

14.30-16.00 — Session-II: eCommerce and SMEs in Developing/Least Developed Economies

  • eCommerce and SMEs — Mr. James Howe, Senior Adviser, Sector and Enterprise Competitiveness, International Trade Centre
  • Global eCommerce Platforms — Challenges for Developing/Least Developed Countries -Dr. Harsha Liyanage, Co-Founder and CEO, Grasshoppers.Ik, Sri Lanka
  • Global eCommerce Platforms- Opportunities for Developing/Least Developed Countries — Mr. Fabian Staechelin, Business Development Manager, eBay
  • Global Platforms and SMEs — Mr. Cheng Ouyang, Executive Senior Advisor, Alibaba Research Institute
  • Presentation “eCommerce as a pillar of Regional Development” — Mr. Francois-Xavier Frederic Creusot de Rezende Martins, Public Affairs Manager, Mercado Libre


Moderator: H.E. Dr. Stephen Ndungu Karau, Ambassador of Kenya to the WTO

16.00-16-15 Coffee break (Venue: CR1 lobby)

16.15-17.30 Session-III: eCommerce Country Experience:

  • Argentina — Mr. Carlos Pallotti, Undersecretary of Technological and Productive Services, Ministry of Production, Government of Argentina
  • Nigeria — Dr. Adetunji Adegbesan, Founder & CEO of Gidi Mobile Ltd
  • Pakistan — Mr. M.A. Mannan, President & CEO of TCS Holdings Private Limited
  • Sri Lanka — H.E. Mr. R. D. Susiri Kumararatne, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Sri Lanka to the WTO
  • ASEAN — Ms Usana Berananda, Minister/DPR of Thailand to the WTO

Concluding remarks

  • UNCTAD — Mr. Joakim Reiter, Deputy Secretary-General
  • WTO GC Chair — H.E. Mr. Harald Neple, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Norway to the WTO

Moderator: H.E. Mr. Hector Marcelo Cima, Ambassador of Argentina to the WTO



WTO members and observers only.

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