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World Trade Forum 2018

Trade, Development and Sustainability

On 28-29 September more than 100 trade practitioners, and scholars, government officials, and representatives of international and nongovernmental organizations participated in the 2018 World Trade Forum at the European University Institute in Florence Italy. Sessions addressed 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. Annually, 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).

Short Video Interviews with Key Speakers (2’11”)

Photo Gallery

WTForum2018

Video Recording of Plenary Sessions 

28 SEPTEMBER

13.30 – 13.45 Welcome

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

13.45 – 15.15 Plenary Session I – The Backlash against Globalization: Implications for (Trade) Governance

Chair
Alan Beattie | Financial Times
Panellists
Brigid Laffan | European University Institute
Paola Conconi | Free University of Brussels
Caroline Freund | World Bank
Lúcio Vinhas de Souza | European Commission
Discussion

17.30 – 19.00 Plenary Session II – Trade and Sustainability: Where are we? Can we get there?

Chair
Matthias Helble | Asian Development Bank Institute
Panellists
Arancha González | International Trade Centre
Joseph Francois | World Trade Institute and University of Bern
Aik Hoe Lim | World Trade Organization
Gregoire Garsous | Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development
Discussion

29 SEPTEMBER

11.00 – 12.30 Plenary Session III – The WTO under threat: Is reform needed? Is it feasible? Options and scenarios

Chair
Andreas Esche | Bertelsmann Stiftung
Panellists
Manfred Elsig | University of Bern and WTI
Stormy-Annika Mildner | The Federation of German Industries
Xiankun Lu | UIBE and Wuhan University
Pascal Lamy | Delors Institute
Discussion


15.30 – 16.30 Plenary Session IV – Digital Trade Technologies, Services and Sustainable Development

Chair
Bernard Hoekman | European University Institute
Panellists
Marion Jansen | International Trade Centre
Erik van der Marel | European Centre for International Political Economy
Matteo Fiorini | European University Institute
Discussion

 

The multilateral trading system

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.

FULL PROGRAMME

 

Conference Papers

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

Digital Trade Restrictiveness Index

Digital Trade Restrictiveness Index, Martina Francesca Ferracane, Hosuk Lee-Makiyama, Erik van der Marel, European Centre for International Political Economy

 

 

Presentations 

The Effect of Environmental Provisions in Trade Agreements on International Trade, Axel Berger, Clara Brandi, Jean-Frédéric Morin & Jakob Schwab, german Development Institute, Florence, 28 September 2018

Voluntary Sustainability Standards (VSS), Trade and Sustainable DevelopmentSantiago Fernández de Córdoba, Senior Economist, UNCTAD, UNFSS Coordinator

Digital Trade Technologies, Services and Sustainable DevelopmentErik van der Marel, Senior Economist at ECIPE, Univesité Libre de Bruxelles (ULB) – Solvay Brussels School

Blockchain and International Trade: Preferential Utilization Rates for Exporters in Developing Countries and Implications for SDGs, Christine McDaniel, Hanna Norberg, Badri Narayanan

 

Partners 

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