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Upcoming Events

World Trade Forum 2018 @ European University Institute - Badia Fiesolana
Sep 28 @ 12:00 pm – Sep 29 @ 4:00 pm



Trade, Development and Sustainability

The multilateral trading system is under stress. Unilateral trade restricting actions by the US and retaliatory responses are one major sources of tension. Another is the refusal by the US to agree to new appointments to the WTO Appellate Body, threatening the ability of WTO members to settle trade disputes. In May 2018 President Macron called for major trading powers to reflect on desirable WTO reforms. Underlying many trade tensions are national policies motivated by economic development objectives. How to reconcile the need for governments to be able to pursue development goals with possible adverse effects on trading partners has long been a key challenge for the global trade regime. Another key challenge is to ensure trade is sustainable.

The 2018 World Trade Forum brings together leading trade practitioners and scholars, government officials, and representatives of international and nongovernmental organizations. Sessions will address the state of play in the WTO and global trade policy trends, external trade strategies of the EU, China and the United States, links between international integration and sustainable trade, measurement of sustainability and recent trade policy research. Every year, a book related to the World Trade Forum is published with Cambridge University Press. For 2018, the book project is managed by Cosimo Beverelli (WTO), Jürgen Kurtz (EUI) and Damian Räss (WTI).







Live Streaming – World Trade Forum 2018

28 September︱13:30 hrs︱Opening remarks & Plenary Session I

The Backlash against Globalization: Implications for (Trade) Governance

Welcome: Brigid Laffan | European University Institute

Opening remarks:
Joseph Francois | World Trade Institute
Bernard Hoekman | European University Institute

Chair: Alan Beattie | Financial Times

Brigid Laffan | European University Institute
Paola Conconi | Free University of Brussels
Caroline Freund | World Bank
Lúcio Vinhas de Souza | European Commission

29 September︱11:30 hrs︱Plenary Session III

The WTO under Threat: Is Reform Needed? Is it Feasible? Options and Scenarios

Chair: Andreas Esche | Bertelsmann Stiftung

Xiankun Lu | UIBE and Wuhan University 
Pascal Lamy | Delors Institute 
Stormy-Annika Mildner | The Federation of German Industries 
Manfred Elsig | University of Bern and World Trade Institute

Papers & Presentations 

Voluntary Sustainability Standards (VSS), Trade and Sustainable Development














Voluntary Sustainability Standards (VSS), Trade and Sustainable Development, third flagship report of the United Nations Forum on Sustainable Standards 

Revitalizing Multilateral Governance at the World Trade Organization














Revitalizing Multilateral Governance at the World Trade Organization, Report of the High-Level Board of Experts on the Future of Global Trade Governance


Hye-Sung Kim, PhD














Acceptable Trade-offs between Economic Growth and Environmental ProtectionHye-Sung Kim, Withrop University and Youngchae Leey, University of Rochester, September 2018


The EU and the WTO













European Commission presents comprehensive approach for the modernisation of the World Trade Organisation, Concept Paper, European Commission, September 2018