2nd– 4th October 2018, Geneva, Switzerland
Regarded as WTO’s largest annual outreach event, the Public Forum provided participants an opportunity to discuss the latest developments in world trade and propose ideas to make it more sustainable. The Opening Plenary Debate set the tone for the Forum with Laura Behrens Wu (CEO and co-founder, Shippo), Christine Bliss (President, Coalition of Services Industries), Tunde Kehinde (Co-founder, Lidya) and Jack Ma (Executive Chairman, Alibaba Group) presenting their vision of trade for 2030. The panel highlighted the responsibilities of governments, non-governmental organizations and businesses in achieving a sustainable future. The panellists answered significant questions about how trade can be a positive factor in solving environmental issues, making small enterprises competitive, the growth of e-commerce and channelizing technology to finance and transform trade.
The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and its Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) set targets to be achieved by 2030 in areas such as poverty reduction, health, education and the environment. Subsequent working sessions held over the three-day event considered substantial trade-related aspects of public health, intellectual property, gender equality, jobs and wages, climate change, fisheries and subsidies, food and agriculture, industrialization and digitization strategies for Africa, fossil-fuel subsidies, e-commerce and consumer welfare, capacity building and MSMEs (Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises); and the role of technology and innovation in achieving the SDGs.
If you wish to learn more interesting insights about the WTO Forum, do not miss the notes from OUR ESR Iulianna Romanchyshyna here.