On July 13 2023, the Friends of Multilateralism Group (FMG) organized an online brainstorming session to discuss the paper “Trading with Friends in Uncertain Times” by Adam Jakubik and Michele Ruta. Mercedes Araoz, FMG member, former Vice-President of Peru and Professor of International Economics and Public Policy at Universidad del Pacifico, Lima, Peru moderated this session.    


At the meeting, Adam Jakubik, Economist in the Strategy, Policy and Review Department of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), and Michele Ruta, Deputy Division Chief in the Strategy and Policy Review Department of IMF shared their insights on the issues including multilateral trade system and trade policy uncertainty in the paper. Bernard Hoekman, FMG member and Professor and Director of the Global Economics programme at the European University Institute of Florence, Italy shared his comments. Then, the speakers answered the questions from the participants.  


More than 30 participants joined the session, including members of FMG, Ambassadors/DPRs of WTO members, Directors of WTO divisions, representatives from related international organizations, and experts from renowned think tanks and universities etc.


Recording of this session can be watched via:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FMN0aQbpaZQ.



Annex 1: Programme




Speaker:   Mercedes Araoz (FMG)





Moderator:  Mercedes Araoz (FMG)

15:06- 15:16

Speaker 1: Adam Jakubik (IMF)

15:16- 15:26

Speaker 2: Michele Ruta (IMF)


Discussant: Bernard Hoekman (FMG)



15:34- 16:30


Moderator:  Mercedes Araoz (FMG)



Annex 2: List of Confirmed Participants



Mercedes Araoz (FMG)

Simon Evenett (FMG)

Jonathan T. Fried (FMG)

Bernard Hoekman (FMG)

Siqi Li (FMG)

Maxim Medvedkov (FMG)

Mario Matus (FMG)

Mia Mikic (FMG)

Fernando De Mateo (FMG)

Sherry Stephenson (FMG)

Xinquan Tu (FMG)



WTO Missions

India: P.S. GANGADHAR, Ambassador

The Republic of Korea: Jung Sung Park, Ambassador

The Repblic of Niger: Laouali Labo, Ambassador

New Zealand: Clare Kelly, Ambassador

Thailand: Pimchanok Pitfield, Ambassador

Finland: Anna Vitie, DPR

Czech Republic: Lenka Šustrová, DPR

Bhutan: Passang Dorji, Counsellor

EU: Remco VAHL, Minister Counsellor


WTO Secretariat

Willy Alfaro, Director, Trade Policies Review Division

Ralph Ossa, Chief Economist and Director,Economic Research and Statistics Division

Gabrielle Marceau, Senior Counsellor for Research on Legal Policy, Economic Research and Statistics Division

Maria Pereyra, Senior Counsellor, Legal Affairs Division

Stephen Fevrier, Senior Advisor to the Director-General


International Organizations

Julia Nielson, OECD



Andre Sapir, Columbia University

Jesse Kreier, Georgetown University