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Florentina Varga

23 Februarie 2019
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Risks to international economy are real and there will be economic problems - said WTO Director General Roberto Azevedo.

EU Trade Ministers in Bucharest : Main issues of discussions

florentina-varga

European Union strategy on modernization of World Trade Organization (WTO) and US-EU trade relations were the main issues discussed by EU Trade Ministers during their informal meeting in Bucharest, on February 21 and 22, under Romania’s EU Council Presidency.

Meeting was chaired by Ștefan-Radu Oprea, Romanian Minister for Business Environment, Trade and Entrepreneurship, with participation of EU Commissioner for Trade, Cecilia Malmström.

On Friday, Ministers discussed EU strategy concerning WTO modernization process, notably the Appellate Body crisis. Participants underlined the need to advance sectorial WTO negotiations, with a view to achieving tangible results at the 12th Ministerial Conference scheduled  for 8-11 June 2020, in Astana, Kazakhstan. Modernization of WTO is one of the top priorities of the Romanian EU Council Presidency.

On the EU-US trade relations, ministers agreed to continue discussions at political level, with a view to adopting negotiating directives on conformity assessment and elimination of tariffs for industrial goods, as soon as possible.

”Romanian EU Presidency has invested significant efforts and reached a compromise at technical level, on both draft negotiating directives, addressing all remaining comments and concerns of Member States. Endorsement of mandates is now subject to a political decision”, said Ștefan-Radu Oprea.

During working lunch, Commissioner Malmström updated ministers on ongoing trade negotiations with third countries (Australia, New Zealand, Mercosur, Mexico, Tunisia, Chile etc.) and on implementation of EU “Everything-But-Arms” initiative under the GSP Regulation, especially in relation with Cambodia and Myanmar.

Informal meeting of EU Trade Ministers was followed by a joint press conference of Minister Ștefan-Radu Oprea and Commissioner Cecilia Malmström.

In the margins of informal ministerial meeting on 21 February 2019, Commissioner Malmström and Minister Oprea hosted a Citizens’ Dialogue focused on EU trade policy agenda. Event was followed by joint press statements by Minister Oprea and Roberto Azevêdo, Director General of World Trade Organization, on issues related to multilateral trading system and increased participation of SMEs in international trade, in the digital era.

Roberto Azevêdo and Bernd Lange, Chair of Committee on International Trade of the European Parliament attended the official dinner offered on Thursday by the Romanian EU Presidency to EU Trade Ministers.

Source:RRA.Translated by Miruna Matei


Etichete Roberto AzevędoŞtefan Radu OpreaCecilia MalmströmOMC

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