TBT@20: Reducing Trade Friction from Standards and Regulations 4 November 2015

Over the last 20 years, the TBT Committee has quietly resolved trade problems of everyday commercial and social significance. From toys, to food, to cars, electronics and cosmetics, there are few products the Committee has not discussed. By developing best practices and sharing information and experiences, the Committee has helped members avoid trade disputes and enhanced regulatory cooperation. This event took stock of the Committeeĺs work over the past 20 years, and looked ahead to challenges on the horizon.

> Programme (pdf)

Programme

PANEL 1: LOOKING BACK

Wednesday, 4 November, 9.45 A.M.

 

The first Panel set the stage with a look back at key challenges posed by the negotiation of the TBT Agreement and the early days of the TBT Committee (Juan-Antonio Dorantes Sanchez, former TBT Chairperson, Mexico). Participants also heard what WTO accession to the WTO TBT Agreement entailed for a large developing member (Mr LIU Yuhua, DDG of the Department of WTO Affairs, Ministry of Commerce of China). Two perspectives from academia were heard; one legal (Professor Joost Pauwelyn), one economic (Professor Jacques Pelkmans). The session was moderated by Aik Hoe Lim (Director, Trade and Environment Division, WTO).
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ADDRESS BY THE DIRECTOR-GENERAL OF THE WTO
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Wednesday, 4 November, 10.45 A.M.

 

PANEL 2: TBT STAKEHOLDERS, BEYOND GOVERNMENTS

Wednesday, 4 November, 11.00 A.M.

 

This Panel engaged the users of the TBT Agreement, beyond governments. The speakers (from industry, trade associations, a standards body and a consumer representative) were asked to answer the following key questions: why does TBT matter for them, how do they engage with governments, and what challenges matter most in this area? The panel included brief interventions from the following speakers: Pńr Stenmark (IKEA), Dominique Taeymans (NestlÚ), Bev Postma (Food Industry Asia Remarks), Jane Ngige (Kenya Flower Council), Dr Scott Steedman (British Standards Institution, BSI) and Sadie Homer (Consumers International). This session was moderated by Devin McDaniels (Trade and Environment Division, WTO).
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PANEL 3: CHALLENGES AHEAD

Wednesday, 4 November, 12.00 P.M.

 

This panel engaged the practitioners: government experts who regularly participate in the TBT Committee. The panel looked ahead: what is coming in the next 20 years on the subject of standards and regulations? Speakers on the panel included: George Opiyo (Uganda), Fabrizio Sacchetti (EU), Jennifer Stradtman (US) and Xinhua Sun (China). This session was moderated by Erik Wijkstr÷m (Trade and Environment Division, WTO).
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