Antigua and Barbuda through its delegation to the World Trade Organization (WTO) – H.E Colin Murdoch, Permanent Representative to the WTO and Ms. Joy-Marie King, Director of International Trade participated virtually in a special session of the WTO’s General Council convened 3 PM Geneva time today 15th February 2021. This special session facilitated the historic appointment of Dr. Ngozi who is from Nigeria, as the institution’s Director-General. Ngozi is the first female and African to hold the top post of this institution. Her term is slated to commence on 1st March 2021.
In addressing the WTO membership, Dr. Ngozi listed among others, some key areas she would like to engage including:
- The WTO working along with the WHO to increase global access of the COVID-19 Vaccine;
- Potential Ministerial Conference (MC12) outcomes slated for December 2021 including an agreement on Fisheries Subsidies;
- Reform of the Dispute Settlement System and the potential to advance a work programme at MC 12; and
- Modernisation of the WTO rules to include 21st Century issues such as eCommerce.
Antigua and Barbuda continues to face the fallout from its longstanding unresolved trade dispute with the United States concerning DS285: Measures Affecting the Cross-Border Supply of Gambling and Betting Services. The United States is yet to comply with the rulings and recommendations of the Dispute Settlement Body after it was found to be in violation of its WTO commitments.
The Delegation of Antigua and Barbuda extends its full support to Dr. Ngozi and wishes her a successful tenure.
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