WTO: Global business calls to action

Stormy-Annika Mildner and Roberto Azevedo © WTO

World Trade Organization (WTO) with its 164 member countries is preparing for its 11th Ministerial Conference in December 2017 in Buenos Aires. While the governments of leading trading nations hesitate on the complex way to new agreements under the umbrella of the WTO, the global business community calls to action.

More than 40 business representatives from all over the world submitted joint recommendations on how to improve the process of WTO and make it more relevant for business. As part of the WTO Trade Dialogues that have been initiated by the International Chamber of Commerce and B20 and were started in May 2016, the business group advocates, among others, for a roll back of protectionism, the revitalization of the WTO negotiations and new plurilateral initiatives.
It also calls for regional trade agreements, a rapid implementation of WTO’s Trade Facilitation Agreement, improved rules on regulatory issues and competition, and steps to facilitate the trade in services and cross border investments. On 20 March 2017 in Geneva, Stormy-Annika Mildner, the moderator of the group and B20 Sherpa Germany, presented the report of the group to WTO Director General Roberto Azevedo. The Director General is a key player in the preparation process for the ministerial meeting of the organization in Buenos Aires.