WTO stirs debate on multilateral trading system

Pascal Lamy – WTO boss

The 2012 World Trade Organisation (WTO) public forum will focus on the international multilateral trading system, the Geneva-based group has said.

The event takes place at the group’s headquarters September 24-26 this year and the WTO said will provide an opportunity for relevant stakeholders of the multilateral trading system to analyse whether multilateralism is in a state of crisis, taking into account both the Doha Round deadlock and elements of the WTO work programme that continue to work well.

On its website, the WTO said this year’s Public Forum poses the question “Is multilateralism in crisis?”

Themes for discussion, the organization listed were formulating new approaches to multilateral trade opening; addressing 21st-century issues and identifying areas in need of new regulations; and looking at the role of non-state actors in strengthening the multilateral trading system

Results from these discussions, it said, should provide some guidance on how the WTO can participate in better addressing world problems and improving global governance.

Over the past few years, the WTO Public Forum has firmly established itself as a major event at which governments, non-governmental organizations, academics, businesses and students can come together to discuss the latest issues regarding the multilateral trading system.

“The significance of this year’s topic makes your participation all the more important. I look forward to welcoming you in Geneva in September,” WTO Boss, Pascal Lamy said.

By Ekow Quandzie

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