HomeNewsDiplomatic NewsAbu Dhabi Declaration marks end of MC13 of WTO

Abu Dhabi Declaration marks end of MC13 of WTO


Abu Dhabi, 4 March 2024 (TDI): The World Trade Organization’s (WTO) 13th Ministerial Conference (MC13) organized from 26 February to 2 March 2024 in Abu Dhabi saw Ministers from across the world attending the prestigious event.

This declaration aims to review the functioning of the multilateral trading system and to streamline WTO’s future course of action.

Dr. Thani bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi, UAE’s Minister of State for Foreign Trade chaired the conference, and reiterated that the conference was “a momentous week not only for Abu Dhabi and the UAE but for global trade as a whole”.

Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Director-General of the WTO, said: “The WTO remains a source of stability and resilience in an economic and geopolitical landscape fraught with uncertainties and exogenous shocks.”

“Trade remains a vital force for improving people’s lives, and for helping businesses and countries cope with the impact of these shocks. Let us get some rest, then regroup and resume,” he added.

The members of the World Trade Organization adopted a Ministerial Abu Dhabi Declaration laying down a reform agenda for the organization. Major ministerial decisions included renewing the commitment to have a fully and well-functioning dispute settlement system by 2024.

Another highlight of the conference was to improve the use of the special and differential treatment (S&DT) provisions for developing and least developed countries (LDCs).

Consensus was also reached on continuing negotiations in all areas where convergence was elusive at MC13.

Also Read: Prime Minister Telephonic Call with Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi

Members agreed to extend the moratorium on customs duties on electronic transmissions for another two years, meaning that trade in purely digital products and services will remain tariff-free until MC14 in Cameroon in the ambit of E-Commerce.

Ministers also adopted a Ministerial Decision to extend the moratorium on non-violation and situation complaints regarding the Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) until MC14.

MC13 also reiterated simplified rules for trade by 72 members that signed up to the Joint Initiative on Services Domestic Regulation account for more than 92 percent of the world’s trade in services.

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