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WTO members secure “historic” Nairobi Package for Africa and the world

WTO members concluded their Tenth Ministerial Conference in Nairobi on 19 December by securing an historic agreement on a series of trade initiatives. The “Nairobi Package” pays fitting tribute to the Conference host, Kenya, by delivering commitments that will benefit in particular the organization’s poorest members.

This has been excerpted from a 19 December 2015 news item by the WTO and is available in its entirety at: https://www.wto.org/english/news_e/news15_e/mc10_19dec15_e.htm


The 2016 World Conference of the IFCBA, Facilitating Trade Through the Customs-Business Connection, will take place from May 17-21 at the WH Ming Hotel in Shanghai, China. Please click here to view the conference page, and to register.

Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP)

A first overview of the main features of the origin provisions contained in the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) has been published as part of the Comparative study on Preferential Rules of Origin. A more detailed comparison between the Agreement and the existing origin models will be conducted once the final text is available.

Switzerland-Argentina DTA To Enter Into Force

The new double tax agreement (DTA) between Switzerland and Argentina will enter into force on November 27, 2015, after Switzerland completed its ratification procedures.

On October 28, Switzerland notified Argentina that it had completed the necessary procedures. The contractual text of the DTA states that it will enter into force 30 days after the latter of the two notifications has been submitted.

Second Round of Negotiations Conclude Between South Korea and Central America

After two rounds of formal negotiations between the authorities of South Korea and Central America, it seems that the free trade agreement (FTA) between the two blocs is feasible and profitable for everyone involved.

In this latest round of negotiations, the topics of market access, rules of origin, technical barriers to trade, sanitary and phytosanitary measures, trade defense, institutional matters, dispute resolution, customs procedures and trade facilitation were discussed.

Tariff Elimination of the Pacific Alliance Could Occur in Early 2016

The countries of the Pacific Alliance, Mexico, Colombia, Peru and Chile could see the elimination of tariffs as early as the first quarter of 2016, said Francisco de Rosenzweig, Undersecretary of Foreign Trade of the Ministry of Economy of Mexico.

Colombia has already completed its internal approval process for starting the reduction. Chile and Peru are making progress with their countries' respective approval processes, and the Mexican Senate hopes to approve the initiative in this regular session period, which ends in December 2015.

To fix WTO labeling issue, Congress must pass voluntary COOL

The World Trade Organization (WTO) delivered a major setback to American consumers and producers earlier this year when it ruled against the U.S. Country-of-Origin Labeling (COOL) law, which requires muscle cuts of meat, and some fruits and vegetables, to be labeled with the country’s name where it was produced. The good news is that the U.S. can both maintain the integrity of this label and at the same time comply with our WTO obligations with one quick fix. That fix – voluntary COOL - has already been introduced in the U.S. Senate.

India wants solution on subsidies from WTO talks, continuation of Doha round: Commerce secy Rita Teaotia

NEW DELHI: With less than a fortnight left for the WTO ministerial in Nairobi, India has stated its expectations from the crucial meeting. Commerce secretary Rita Teaotia has said that even though the contours of what is there on the negotiating table of the WTO, there are four issues on which India wants to emphasise- continuation of the Doha Development Agenda, special safeguard mechanism, removal of targeted subsidies and reduction in trade distorting subsidies.

E.U., Vietnam complete trade negotiations

BRUSSELS, BELGIUM —The European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker and the Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyễn Tấn Dũng announced on Dec. 3 that they had officially concluded negotiations on a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) between the E.U. and Vietnam. The agreement will give the E.U. access to one of Asia's most promising markets. Vietnam is a fast growing economy and became a World Trade Organization (WTO) member in 2007. With its 90,000,000 inhabitants and growing middle class, it arises as an interesting market for E.U. exporters.