Members share customs valuation experiences and practices since start of the pandemic

Members shared customs valuation experiences and practices since the COVID-19 pandemic began in 2020. At a meeting of the Committee on Customs Valuation on 24 May, delegates also reviewed national customs valuation legislation notified by over 30 members and agreed to extend the trial period for an eAgenda platform intended to assist the work of the Committee.

Plastics Pollution Dialogue unveils elements of potential outcome for MC13

The Dialogue on Plastics Pollution and Environmentally Sustainable Plastics Trade made substantial progress at a meeting on 25 May, introducing the coordinators’ draft vision on the way forward and elements for a potential outcome at the 13th Ministerial Conference (MC13) to be held in February 2024. The coordinators of the Dialogue hailed the draft elements as the culmination of extensive work over the past two years and a pivotal step towards achieving “concrete, pragmatic and effective outcomes” at MC13. It’s our responsibility to make MC13 a success, they said.

E-commerce negotiations maintain positive momentum, focus on key issues

Participants in the negotiations on e-commerce discussed key issues such as data flow, data localisation and development at their 22-25 May meetings. The co-convenors (Australia, Japan and Singapore) urged members to step up the work of the small groups between now and the summer break in order to achieve as much convergence as possible.

New report looks at WTO technical assistance activities in post-pandemic era

The recently published 2022 report on WTO technical assistance outlines how the WTO Secretariat has responded to the training needs of WTO members and observer governments since the ending of COVID-19 restrictions. In the foreword to the report, Deputy Director-General Xiangchen Zhang says: “The WTO Secretariat has continued to adapt technical assistance activities and keep them relevant in a fast-changing world.”

WTO Workshop on Fisheries Subsidies for the Asia Region

Opening remarks by DDG Ellard

India appeals panel report regarding Indian tech tariffs

India notified its decision to appeal the panel report in the case brought by Japan in “India — Tariff Treatment on Certain Goods” (DS584). The panel report was circulated to WTO members on 17 April. The appeal was circulated to WTO members on 25 May.

DDG Ellard highlights importance of Fisheries Subsidies Agreement at workshop in Malaysia

At the WTO regional workshop on fisheries subsidies held in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, on 23-25 May, Deputy Director-General Angela Ellard underlined the importance of the new WTO Fisheries Subsidies Agreement for Asia. She urged governments in the region to secure acceptance of the Agreement as soon as possible so that it can contribute to a healthy ocean ecosystem.

International organizations launch platform to promote access to subsidy information

The heads of the IMF, OECD, World Bank and the WTO today (25 May) announced the launch of a Joint Subsidy Platform (JSP) at to enhance transparency on the use of subsidies. The JSP is intended to facilitate access to information on the nature, size and economic impact of subsidies, with a view to facilitating dialogue on their appropriate use and design.

Trade Policy Course underway in Mexico for Latin American countries

A total of 25 government officials from 15 WTO members are attending the WTO’s Regional Trade Policy Course for Latin American countries taking place from 15 May to 7 July in Mexico City. Co-organized by the WTO and El Colegio de México, the course seeks to expand participants’ understanding of the multilateral trading system and the work of the WTO.

Argentina initiates WTO dispute complaint regarding US measures on certain tubular goods

Argentina has requested WTO dispute consultations with the United States regarding certain US anti-dumping measures on oil country tubular goods (OCTG) from Argentina as well as Section 771(7)(G) of the US Tariff Act of 1930. The request was circulated to WTO members on 25 May.