In July 2022, The Friends of Multilateralism Group (FMG) organized Board Meeting and 2022 FMG General Assembly to summarize the work for the past year (July 2021-July 2022) and decide on concerning relevant matters.

 

In the past year, FMG has organized 25 brainstorming sessions, focusing on important issues related to WTO reform such as dispute settlement, climate change and food security etc. The participants includes members of FMG/FFMG, Ambassadors/DPRs of WTO members, and representatives from related international organizations and think tanks. Moreover, during MC12, FMG has organized 16 sessions of interview series titled “MC12 and Beyond” to interview senior WTO officials, relevant experts, business representatives and media on the MC12 outcomes, key issues and negotiation process etc. In addition, FMG members published 22 articles on the FMG website, concerning a wide range of issues such as investment facilitation, special and differential treatment issues, digital fragmentation etc.

 

During the past year, FMG increased 7 new members as below (in alphabetic order of family name):

Axel ADDY, former Minister of Commerce and Industry of Liberia

Maxim MEDVEDKOV, former Russia’s Chief Trade Negotiator

Pradeep S MEHTA, Founder Secretary General of the Jaipur-based Consumer Unity & Trust Society (CUTS International)

Victor DO PRADO, former Director of Council and Trade Negotiations Committee at the WTO

Jan Yves REMY, WTO Chair for Barbados, University of the West Indies 

Jayashree WATAL, former Senior Counsellor of the Intellectual Property, Government Procurement and Competition Division of WTO, Honorary Professor at the National Law University, Delhi 

John M WEEKES, former Ambassador of Canada to WTO

 

FFMG (Friends of FMG) increased 2 new members as below:

Brad MCDONALD, Deputy Chief for Trade Policy in the IMF External Policies Division

Sacha SILVA, Chief of Staff in the Office of the Executive Director, International Trade Centre

 

FMG added Sherry Stephenson, Services Convenor for the Pacific Economic Cooperation Council (PECC) as a new Board Member. Now there are a total of 7 Board Members, namely Alejandro JARA, Patrick LOW, Xiankun LU, Mia MIKIC, Stuart HARBINSON, Daniel CROSBY, and Sherry STEPHENSON.

 

Annex 1: List of all FMG activities (July 2021-July 2022)

  • September 21st2021 | FMG Online Brainstorming on the New Book “China and the WTO-Why Multilateralism Still Matters”
  • October 11th2021 | FMG “Trade Policy Preview” (T-PP) Session on Russia
  • October 28th2021 | FMG&WEF Online Brainstorming on Subsidies and Government Intervention
  • November 2nd2021 | FMG Online Brainstorming on the Appellate Body
  • November 5th2021 | FMG Internal Briefing on EU proposal “Working Group on the WTO Reform”
  • November 9th2021 | FMG Online Brainstorming on Investment Facilitation for Development
  • December 2nd2021 | FMG Internal Brainstorming on MC12 and WTO reform
  • January 11th2022 | FMG Brainstorming: “Arriving at an equitable response to the pandemic”
  • February 9th2022 | FMG Online Brainstorming: “A missed opportunity-What happened to multilateral negotiations on trade in services and where can they go next?”
  • February 25th2022 | FMG Dialogue with USTR Senior Advisor Elizabeth Baltzan
  • March 11th2022 | FMG Internal Briefing on MC12 and the WTO Reform
  • March 14th2022 | FMG Online Discussion on Russia-Ukraine Situation and the WTO
  • March 15th2022 | FMG “Trade Policy Preview” (T-PP) Session on Pakistan
  • March 28th2022 | FMG Online Brainstorming Session “Rethinking S&D in the WTO”
  • April 5th2022 | FMG Online Discussion on Quad Agreement on TRIPS Waiver
  • April 7th2022 | FMG Online Brainstorming Session on Trade and Gender
  • April 11th2022 | FMG Internal Briefing on MC12 and the WTO Reform
  • May 2nd2022 | FMG Online Brainstorming on the Dispute Settlement Body and Appellate Body Crisis
  • May 4th2022 | FMG Online Brainstorming on Carbon Adjustment, Climate Change and WTO Reform
  • May 26th2022 | FMG Online Brainstorming on Food Security: What Can the WTO Do in Times of Crisis?
  • June 7th2022 | FMG Internal Brainstorming on IPEF
  • June 12th2022 | FMG Brainstorming Dinner with EP Delegates
  • June 24th2022 | FMG Internal Briefing on Sidley Proposal on DS Reform
  • June 30th2022 | FMG Dialogue with Key Capitals (Brussels)
  • July 1st2022 | FMG Brainstorming Session on MC12 and Beyond
  • June 2022 | FMG interview series “MC12 and beyond” (16 sessions)

 

Annex 2: Publications of FMG Members (July 2021-July 2022)

  1. September 2021 | Hamid Mamdouh | Legal options for integrating a new investment facilitation agreement into the WTO structure
  2. October 2021 | Simon Evenett | Subsidies and Market Access: Towards an Inventory of Corporate Subsidies by China, the European Union and the United States
  3. November 2021 | Simon Evenett | Is the WTO Moratorium on Customs Duties on E-Commerce Depriving Developing Countries of Much Needed Revenue?
  4. November 2021 | Xiankun LU | Systemic Collision and Convergence under the WTO reform
  5. December 2021 | Peter Draper | Rethinking special and differential treatment in the World Trade Organization
  6. December 2021 | Pradeep S Mehta | Arriving at an equitable response to the pandemic
  7. December 2021 | Peter Ungphakorn | Good news and bad news from the scrapped WTO Ministerial Conference
  8. January 2022 | Patrick Low | The WTO in Crisis: Closing the Gap between Conversation and Action or Shutting Down the Conversation?
  9. February 2022 | Mia Mikic | 2021 – The Year Trade Turned to Women
  10. April 2022 | Alan Wolff | WTO 2025: Restoring Binding Dispute Settlement
  11. May 2022 | Alan Wolff | WTO 2025: Enhancing global trade intelligence
  12. May 2022 | Alan Wolff | WTO 2025: Getting back to the negotiating table
  13. May 2022 | Alan Wolff | Constructing an executive branch
  14. June 2022 | Simon Evenett | Setting the Record Straight: Correcting Misleading Empirical Evidence and Other Errors About the Moratorium on Customs Duties on Electronic Transmissions
  15. June 2022 | Simon Evenett | Emergent digital fragmentation: The perils of unilateralism
  16. June 2022 | Peter Ungphakorn | How did the Ministerial Conference do? Our scorecards
  17. June 2022 | Pradeep S Mehta | From green rooms to red carpet: How WTO members defied the odds and delivered at MC12
  18. June 2022 | Cecilia Malmström | WTO makes progress but could do more for women
  19. June 2022 | Wendy Cutler | A glimmer of hope for improved US-China trade relations
  20. June 2022 | SimonEvenett | Emergent digital fragmentation: The perils of unilateralism
  21. July 2022 | BernardHoekman | Green shoots for multilateral trade cooperation?
  22. July 2022 | Xiankun Lu | The new starting point of the World Trade Organization: Evaluation of MC12 Outcomes and the Prospects