Deadline extended to submit Aid-for-Trade questionnaires for 2022 Global Review

As part of the Aid-for-Trade Monitoring and Evaluation exercise, WTO members, observers and their development partners are invited to submit their self-assessment questionnaires by 31 January 2022. Their responses will be analysed by the WTO Secretariat and presented at the upcoming Aid for Trade Global Review later in the year.

DG Okonjo-Iweala calls on ministers to step up negotiating efforts, harvest outcomes

Director-General Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala on 21 January called on ministers from a cross-section of WTO members to push ahead in all ongoing negotiations, and work with “pragmatism, creativity, and flexibility” to harvest agreements as and when they are within reach. Ministers broadly accepted her suggestion to accelerate work, both in Geneva and in capitals, so WTO members can deliver results despite the uncertainty regarding the rescheduling of the 12th Ministerial Conference (MC12) following its Omicron-induced postponement in November.

Tenth China Round Table looks at impact of 10 years of China Programme on LDC accessions

The Tenth China Round Table on WTO Accessions, held virtually on 18-20 January, celebrated 10 years of the China Programme, with participants reflecting on its impact on the accession of least-developed countries (LDCs) and discussing the future direction of this initiative. The event also provided an opportunity for trade experts to present a study reviewing the results of accession for the nine countries that have joined the organization as LDCs since 1995 — Nepal, Cambodia, Cabo Verde, Samoa, Vanuatu, Lao PDR, Yemen, Liberia and Afghanistan.

DDG González: Now is the time to think big on customs reform

“Customs has a key role in making trade seamless, safe and secure,” stated WTO Deputy Director-General Anabel González at a 20 January hearing of the European Union’s Wise Persons Group on Challenges Facing the Customs Union.

International Criminal Court Marks Opening of the Judicial Year 2022

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WTO report looks into steps taken to boost LDCs’ participation in international trade

A new WTO publication launched on 19 January highlights that further support will be needed from the international community in the next decade to strengthen least-developed countries’ (LDC) participation in world trade. While LDCs have benefited over the past ten years from greater market access opportunities, flexibilities in implementing WTO rules and trade-related technical assistance, the COVID-19 pandemic has led to even greater challenges for these countries, hitting their exports hard.

Statement of ICC Prosecutor, Karim A.A. Khan QC, to the United Nations Security Council on the Situation in Darfur, pursuant to Resolution 1593 (2005)

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Austria gives EUR 200,000 to boost developing countries’ trade expertise via chairs network

The government of Austria has contributed EUR 200,000 (CHF 215,000) in 2022 to the Global Trust Fund to support the new phase of the WTO Chairs Programme, an initiative aimed at supporting trade-related academic activities in developing countries and least-developed countries (LDCs).

ICC marks opening of the Judicial Year on 20 January 2022

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Comoros discusses accession, post-accession technical assistance with development partners

A roundtable jointly organized by Comoros, the WTO and the Standards and Trade Development Facility (STDF) brought together on 13 January government officials and development partners to discuss technical assistance and capacity building needs of Comoros in relation to its accession to the WTO. Mzé Abdou Mohamed Chanfiou, Minister of Economy, Industry and Investment and Comoros WTO chief negotiator, stressed that negotiations had reached a high level of “technical maturity” and reaffirmed his government’s commitment to complete the accession process in 2022.