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World Trade Organisation Ministers (MC13) To Meet in Abu Dhabi

The WTO’s “MC13” meeting will take place on 26-29 February. It will be a key meeting for the Organisation. Of great importance to ecommerce is the Moratorium (see below), but the meeting is also due to see a clash between the EU and India heading a group of non-aligned countries. The EU has proposed that new issues such as carbon taxes, industrial subsidies, women and climate be included at the MC13 ministerial meeting. EU officials have said the Union wants an open-ended work programme for such issues, but India has opposed them being discussed at MC13 because there is no negotiating mandate from the global trade body. This squabble underlines the issues facing WTO. Its major aim is to solve trade disputes and reduce non-tariff barriers, but under the Trump Administration its dispute resolution service was starved of resources. Another Trump administration could see the end of WTO as a functioning body and therefore an increase in global trade wars.

Alastair Tempest

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