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WTO Chair at UIBE attended WTO MC13 activities in Abu Dhabi

The 13th WTO Ministerial Conference (MC13) was held in ABU Dhabi, UAE from February 26 to March 2, 2024. Azali Assoumani, President of the Union of Comoros, Jose Ramos Horta, President of Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste, WTO Director-General Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Ministers of Economy, Trade and Development of several WTO members and representatives of the Global Economic and Trade Organization attended the event.

Delegates from the WTO Chair at UIBE, Chairholder Prof. Tu Xinquan, Co-Chair Prof. Ji Wenhua, team members Prof. Zhou Nianli, Prof. Liu Bin and Associate Prof. Dai Zhen, attended MC13 activities in Abu Dahbi from Feb.25 to Feb.29. Delegates had extensive and in-depth exchanges with officials, industry and academic representatives from many countries on "green trade", "investment facilitation", "digital trade and technology", "women and trade" and "dispute settlement mechanism".

On the morning of Feb. 27th, Prof. Tu Xinquan and his delegation attended the press conference on "Plastic pollution and environmental sustainable plastic trade". WTO Deputy Director-General Jean-Marie Epaugam, Director of WTO Trade and Environment Department Aik Hoe Lim, Chinese Vice Minister of Commerce Li Fei and other officials attended the press conference. Prof. Tu Xinquan had an in-depth conversation with the participants.

On the afternoon of the Feb. 27th, Prof. Tu Xinquan was also invited to participate in a seminar on the theme of "Climate change-related subsidies and WTO compliance" held by the University of St. Gallen in Switzerland, chaired by Prof. Simon Evenett. Prof. Tu Xinquan pointed out that subsidies and other related industrial policies are usually controversial, but green-related subsidy policies have their own particularities, and whether climate change-related subsidies are in line with WTO trade rules was analyzed and discussed.

The MC13 has received wide attention and hot discussion from domestic and foreign media. During the meeting, Prof. Tu Xinquan and Prof. Zhou Nianli were interviewed by Phoenix TV, China Global Television Network (CGTN), Global Times, China Trade News and other media on the hot topics of the MC13 such as "Investment Facilitation Agreement" and "WTO dispute settlement mechanism". Prof. Tu Xinquan pointed out that the most concerned issue at present is the China-led Investment facilitation Agreement, which is an agreement resulting from the negotiation model proposed by the Joint Declaration. If this agreement is finally incorporated into the WTO framework, it means a major innovation in the negotiation model. In addition, to restore the normal operation of the WTO dispute settlement mechanism, due to the opposition of the United States, it is difficult to make substantive progress.

Delegates from WTO Chair at UIBE also participated in the " Women's Forum for the Economy and Society", "the WTO dispute settlement mechanism reform", "trade and environment", "trade and digital technology", and "digital trade union" events such as the official press release and academic research seminars.

Prof. Tu Xinquan and his delegation also met with UIBE alumni – Mr. Sun Yuanjiang, the Chief Representative of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank in the Middle East, and senior official Mr. Zhang Bo.