For a Strong and Modern World Trading System

Postition Paper Summary

Create new market access worldwide, stop protectionism

Subsequent to the December 2015 WTO Ministerial Conference in Nairobi, the organization’s members must now not only finish the remaining issues on the Doha Agenda (Doha Development Agenda, DDA) with market access for goods being a top priority. They also need to embrace a new negotiation mode as the single undertaking principle has clearly failed. The WTO and the G20 should also step up their efforts to curb creeping protectionism, by strengthening monitoring mechanisms for example.

Develop and adapt the multilateral trading system

The WTO’s spectrum of topics, rules, and organization must be adapted to meet the challenges of the twenty-first century. The neglect of areas like in- vestment, export restrictions, digital trade, public procurement, and competi- tion must not be allowed to continue. The use of plurilateral and sectoral agreements to liberalize trade should be increased. The 162 WTO members must be more clearly differentiated according to their level of development. More advanced emerging and developing countries need to more fully em- brace the obligations under the WTO.

Expand multilateral rules for preferential agreements

The WTO members should create more precise rules and clearer definitions for preferential trade agreements in order to improve their coherence with the multilateral trading system. Greater transparency and closer monitoring of conformity with WTO rules will facilitate later multilateralization. Stricter regula- tions on preferential rules of origin in the WTO represent another important step.


Dr. Stormy-Annika Mildner
External Economic Policy


Eckart von Unger
Senior Manager
External Economic Policy
BDI e.V.


Julia Callies
Senior Manager
Security and Raw Materials
BDI e.V.