Tomorrow, participants from all over the world will attend the WTO Public Forum 2019 at the World Trade Organisation in Geneva. The WTO is in a highly critical situation as the collapse of the Appellate Body as the cornerstone of the WTO dispute settlement system could already happen in December this year.
BusinessEurope President Pierre Gattaz said:
“The multilateral trading system is facing an unprecedented crisis and we must act now. With trade tensions on the rise we need impartial and effective solutions to solve disputes. We must avoid the collapse of the WTO Appellate Body. If the WTO dispute settlement mechanism is no longer functioning, there is no guarantee that rules will be respected and that countries will not break international commitments. The expected high attendance of business representatives at this forum clearly shows that companies need trade rules and effective ways of enforcing them. Companies stand behind the WTO and support efforts to modernise and reinforce the institution.”
To contribute to the debate on a modern and more effective WTO, BusinessEurope is publishing a paper illustrating the importance of trade in services for manufacturers. The paper includes nine real-life examples of individual companies showing the close interconnection between trade in goods and trade in services.
“Trade in services and trade in goods are indissociable. Through globalisation and technological innovation, services play a crucial role in manufacturing: services such as logistics are supporting global value chains, services such as software and design are integral part of goods, and services such as customer care are supplied together with goods. A trade policy fit for the 21st century can no longer ignore this reality,” Gattaz said.
To raise awareness on the topic, BusinessEurope is also organising a working session on how trade policy can enhance the relationship between services and manufacturing at the WTO Public Forum on 10 October.
Read our new paper 'Services trade and manufacturing' here.