Bali WTO Ministerial side event

Bali WTO Ministerial side event
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Dr Debapriya Bhattacharya (2R) moderated the dialogue

Centre for Policy Dialogue (CPD) organised a dialogue on “Integrating Trade Issues in Post-2015 International Development Framework: Ongoing Debates and Potential Opportunities,” on the side lines of the Ninth WTO Ministerial Conference (WTO MC9) on Thursday, 5 December 2013. The dialogue was organised as part of the Bali Trade and Development Symposium (TDS).

Chaired by Dr Debapriya Bhattacharya, Distinguished Fellow of CPD, the session addressed the importance of the trade related issues which came out of post-2015 international development discourse, with a special attention on investment, finance, Aid for Trade (AfT) and technology related issues. Given the stalemate in WTO negotiation, the role of multilateral trading system in shaping the post-2015 trade agenda was discussed in the session. It also addressed major trade related concerns of vulnerable economies including LDCs in the context of post-2015 agenda.

The dialogue was jointly organised by International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development (ICTSD), The Commonwealth, South Asia Watch on Trade, Economics and Environment (SAWTEE), Southern Voice on Post-MDG International Development Goals and LDC IV Monitor.

Professor Mustafizur Rahman (C)

Professor Mustafizur Rahman (C)

Designated speakers at the dialogue included Mr Shanker Das Bairagi, Ambassador, Permanent Representative of Nepal to the WTO; Mr Carlos A Primo Braga, Professor of International Political Economy at IMD Business School, Switzerland; Mr Cheikh Tidiane Dieye, Coordinator, Trade, Regional Integration & Development, Enda Tiers Monde, Senegal; Mr Nicolas Imboden, Executive Director IDEAS Centre, Switzerland; Mr Rashid S Kaukab, Director, CUTS International, Switzerland; Mr Ricardo Meléndez-Ortiz, Chief Executive, International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development, Switzerland; Ms Jane Seruwagi Nalunga, Country Director, Southern and Eastern African Trade Information and Negotiations Institute, Kampala, Uganda; Mr Posh Raj Pandey, Executive Chairman-South Asia Watch on Trade, Economics & Environment, Nepal;  Mr Cyrus Rustomjee Director: Economic Affairs Division, Commonwealth Secretariat; Mr Dirk Willem te Velde, Investment and Growth Programme Overseas Development Institute (ODI), UK; and Mr Rorden Wilkinson, Professor of International Political Economy, University of Manchester, UK.

Apart from organising the dialogue, the CPD delegation comprising Professor Mustafizur Rahman, Executive Director, Dr Debapriya Bhattacharya; Dr Fahmida Khatun, Research Director and Dr Khondaker Golam Moazzem, Additional Research Director also attended a number of side events of the Conference on various capacities.

Dr Debapriya Bhattacharya (2R) addresses a session

Dr Debapriya Bhattacharya (2R) addresses a session

On 3 December 2013, Professor Mustafizur Rahman participated at the UNCTAD-Commonwealth Discussion Session titled “Reflection on Global Trade: From Doha to Bali Ministerial Conference and Beyond” as a panellist. The session addressed questions regarding how the longstanding Doha Development issues can be addressed effectively and how the poorest and most vulnerable countries can best be supported to deal with trade and capacity building related challenges.

On the same day, Dr Debapriya Bhattacharya and Dr Fahmida Khatun addressed a Consultation Meeting for the European Report on Development (ERD) 2014 on “Financing and Other Means of Implementation in the Post-2015 Context,” as part of the Bali TDS. The consultation addressed the role of trade facilitation, aid for trade and economic transformation in the post-2015 context. The ERD 2014 is being produced by a consortium of ODI, ECDPM, DIE, the University of Athens and the Southern Voice Network on behalf of the European Commission and four member states – France, Germany, Finland and Luxembourg. The ERD 2014 will include a chapter on Bangladesh which will be written by CPD researchers led by Dr Fahmida Khatun.

Other sessions addressed by Dr Bhattacharya included “Reviving Multilateral Trade Cooperation”, jointly organised by Robert Schuman Centre for Advanced Studies, European University Institute on 4 December and “The Way Forward After Bali: Challenges and Opportunities for LDCs” organised by IDEAS Centre, on 5 December 2013.

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