June 14, 2022 | Text by WTO.org

A delegation of parliamentarians presented Director-General Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala with a statement today (14 June) expressing strong support for the multilateral trading system and calling for the 12th Ministerial Conference (MC12) to act as a starting point for modernizing the WTO. The statement was submitted to the DG by MEP Bernd Lange, Co-Chair of the Steering Committee of the Parliamentary Conference on the WTO, who was accompanied by three other members of the Committee.

DG Okonjo-Iweala receives a statement in support of the WTO from MEPs (left to right) Margarida Marques, Samira Rafaela, Bernd Lange and Marie-Pierre Vedrenne.

The statement underlines that “MC12 can offer a great opportunity to reinstate trust in the multilateral trading system and should be the starting point for modernizing and reforming the WTO to ensure it can play a role in addressing the challenges of the 21st century, including issues such as climate change and sustainability and in particular today, global food security.”

The statement results from discussions among parliamentarians from various countries within the framework of the Steering Committee of the Parliamentary Conference on the WTO. The Committee met on 13 June in Geneva to discuss the role of the WTO and the challenges facing world trade. It was briefed by the WTO Secretariat on the state of play in trade negotiations and on the topics for discussion at MC12.

The Parliamentary Conference is a joint endeavour of the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) and the European Parliament (EP). The Steering Committee of the Parliamentary Conference meets twice a year in Geneva and Brussels and consists of around 30 parliamentarians from various countries.

The statement is available here.