New Issues

E-Com at MC11 is effort to hijack basic internet governance issues
(Chakravarthi Raghavan, Geneva, 22 November 2017)
As issues relating to the monopolistic/oligopolistic control over information and data by the Silicon Valley technology giants and their platforms are beginning to attract adverse public and political attention around the world, these technology platforms (Google, Facebook, Twitter) are attempting to hijack the issue of internet governance and democracy by writing trade rules at the WTO under the rubric of "e-commerce".

A new vice-chair, consultations to intensify on organisation of MC11
(Kanaga Raja, Geneva, 30 October 2017)
With less than seven weeks to go for the eleventh Ministerial Conference of the WTO, the Chair of the General Council, Ambassador Xavier Carim of South Africa, is holding intensified consultations and meetings on the organization of MC11 and the kind of outcome document members would like to see coming out of MC11.

MC11 becoming a North-South battle
(D. Ravi Kanth, Geneva, 26 October 2017)
The eleventh ministerial conference (MC11) of the World Trade Organization in Buenos Aires in December is increasingly transforming itself into a North-South battle on unresolved trade issues of the Doha Work Program (DWP).

The African Group position on e-commerce talks at WTO
(Kanaga Raja, Geneva, 24 October 2017)
The African Group has formally circulated on 20 October, as a restricted official document, the full statement that it had delivered at an informal meeting on the Work Programme on Electronic Commerce on 16 October.

Consensus eludes trade ministers at Marrakesh
(D. Ravi Kanth, Geneva, 16 October 2017)
The just-concluded informal trade ministerial summit in Marrakesh on 10 October brought into sharp focus the linkages between fisheries subsidies and improvements in the Doha trade remedy rules, and between the permanent solution for public stockholding programs and domestic support.

South call for credible results, including on PSH & SSM at MC11
(D. Ravi Kanth, Geneva, 27 July 2017)
The developing countries, individually and along with their coalitions on Tuesday called for credible results based on the Doha work program, including the permanent solution for public stockholding programs for food security, at the World Trade Organization's eleventh ministerial meeting in Buenos Aires in December, trade envoys told SUNS.

Doha Round "legacy issues" can't be ignored in favour of new issues
(Kanaga Raja, Geneva, 21 July 2017)
The legacy issues of the Doha Round cannot be ignored in the push for starting negotiations on the new issues (such as investment facilitation and binding rules on e-commerce), and the WTO members must decide "by consensus" that the Round has been concluded, Ms Nirmala Sitharaman, India's Minister for Commerce and Industry, said on 18 July.

India optimistic over course-correction for Buenos Aires MC11
(D. Ravi Kanth, Geneva, 21 July 2017)
The Indian commerce minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Wednesday (19 July) expressed "optimism" about finalizing two-thirds of the work on the proposed deliverables for the World Trade Organization's eleventh ministerial meeting by the time when an informal trade ministerial summit takes place in Marrakech by mid-October.

North to try to bury DDA, push e-commerce & MSME talks at MC11
(D. Ravi Kanth, Geneva, 14 June 2017)
Major developed countries and their "allies" in the developing world have intensified efforts to quietly bury the Doha Development Agenda negotiations while launching negotiations on electronic-commerce and micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) at the World Trade Organization's eleventh ministerial conference in Buenos Aires in December, several ministers and trade envoys told SUNS.

South nations demand credible, concrete outcomes on Doha at MC11
(D. Ravi Kanth, Paris, 12 June 2017)
Trade ministers from India, South Africa, Indonesia, and the ACP countries on Thursday called for credible and concrete outcomes based on the outstanding Doha issues at the World Trade Organization's eleventh ministerial meeting in Buenos Aires in December, according to people familiar with the development.

WTO Members voice their views on key issues for MC11
(Kanaga Raja, Geneva, 28 February 2017)
An informal Heads of Delegation (HOD) meeting at the WTO on 23 February heard a range of members voicing their views on what they see as their priority issues for possible deliverables at the eleventh ministerial conference (MC11) in Buenos Aires later this year.

WTO secretariat & DG reproached for vitiating negotiating climate
(D. Ravi Kanth, Geneva, 27 February 2017)
India and several developing countries on Thursday (23 February) reproached the World Trade Organization Secretariat led by Director-General Roberto Azevedo for "vitiating" the negotiating climate by pushing controversial new issues such as e-commerce and investment facilitation, despite opposition from a large majority of members, trade envoys told SUNS.

CSOs urge WTO DG to advance development mandate, not 'new issues'
(Kanaga Raja, Geneva, 13 February 2017)
Over 80 Indian civil society organisations (CSOs) called on WTO Director-General Roberto Azevedo to advance the development mandate of the WTO negotiations especially on key issues in agriculture, instead of his current push for agreements on e-commerce and investment.

ICs want "payment" anew for unresolved Doha agri issues
(D. Ravi Kanth, Geneva, 24 January 2017)
Major developed and some developing countries appear to be pushing for "payment" for addressing the unresolved Doha issues in agriculture in the run-up to the World Trade Organization's eleventh ministerial meeting in Buenos Aires later this year, sources told SUNS on Saturday.