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WTO PUBLIC FORUM “Trading Into the Future” A Joint ECIPE and ICC Session

September 24 2008
Venue: WTO Headquarters, Geneva.
Time: 14:15

Making Future Trade Policy Relevant to Future Trade Reality
A Joint ECIPE and ICC Session

At a time when confidence in the ability of the WTO to deliver meaningful trade policy is at a low and questions are being raised as to its future, bringing the focus back to the priority needs of the world’s traders is one way to ensure the organisation’s future relevance.

 
Co-hosted by the European Centre for International Political Economy (ECIPE) and the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), this session will address the changing realities of the global trading system and ask whether global trade policy is keeping pace. Increasing fragmentation of production chains in particular poses questions as to whether trade policy negotiated today will be relevant to the future needs of global business. The heart of trade policy making should be facilitating cross-border trade by businesses, and their perspective is crucial if the theme of this year’s Public Forum – “Trading into the Future” – is to be tackled effectively.
 
We aim to bring together business representatives, policy analysts and trade specialists in this session, which is both timely and relevant to policy making at the WTO. Questions arising include:
How does the fragmentation of production chains affect trade policy aims and requirements?
 
How has Asia used this fragmentation to integrate into the world economy? What lessons can be learned from this experience?
 
How is the trade of the future thus being shaped? What will be the key trade policy issues of the future?
 
In short, are business and the WTO singing from the same song sheet?
 
Such questions are not just unavoidable, but could help policy makers and negotiators navigate through the mounting number of issues being brought to the table, by focusing on what is of practical importance economically, as well as politically. Such a debate will undoubtedly add value and depth to ongoing trade policy considerations and to trade policy formulation for the future.

Programme>

Panel Biographies>

For more information on the Forum and to register visit the official 2008 Public Forum website>

Location