Webinar on WTO MC12 Outcomes and Implications
27 July 2022
Results of the World Trade Organization’s 12th Ministerial:
Outcomes on Agriculture, Fisheries, Access to Medicines, and more
Implications on Corporate Takeover, Multilateralism, and the Environment
Social movements and civil society fighting for economic justice have long shifted their focus away from the WTO and towards bilateral and regional free trade agreements, as well as struggles against debt and financialization. But the outcome of the WTO’s 12th Ministerial Conference (MC12) in Geneva in June likely indicates a resurgence in the need to focus civil society and trade union efforts on the WTO.
MC12 concluded with pro-corporate, anti-worker and anti-development outcomes on all major issues of access to medicines, agriculture, fisheries subsidies, digital trade, and the future of the WTO itself.
The agreements should herald a warning to all: rich country governments professing new commitments to sustainable and worker-centered trade are just as likely to push anti-development outcomes and cosmetic window-dressing when it comes to protecting Big Business profits above the public interest.
These outcomes portend new fights on the horizon: on environmental issues in five plurilateral agreements currently under negotiations in the WTO; upcoming fights on investment and expanding the role of corporations in domestic policymaking on services; and much more.
A front-line report-back and considerations of important issues moving forward, including for civil society working on non-WTO related issues.
Speakers and Issues:
- MC12 and WTO outcomes in context: Deborah James, Facilitator, Our World Is Not for Sale global network
- Process violations and development issues at MC12: Kinda Mohamadieh, Senior Researcher & Legal Advisor, Third World Network, Lebanon
- Access to medicines, Covid-19, and the TRIPS waiver: Fatima Hassan, Health Justice Initiative, South Africa
- Covid-19 Vaccine and Treatment Equity post-TRIPS Waiver: Professor Brook K. Baker, Senior Policy Analyst, Health Global Access Project
- Agriculture and food security: Ranja Sengupta, Senior Researcher, Third World Network, India
- Fisheries subsidies outcomes: Adam Wolfenden, Campaigner, Pacific Network on Globalisation (PANG), Pacific Islands
- Outcomes and prospects for workers and labor: Yorgos Altintzis, International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC), Brussels
- Tax justice & e-commerce: Sofia Scasserra, IMT, UNTREF, Argentina
- MC12 and the environment: Rashmi Banga, UNCTAD, Geneva
- Multilateralism and corporate rule in services and investment: Jane Kelsey, Emeritus Professor of Law, University of Auckland
- National campaign work in developing countries: Rahmat Maulana Sidik, Indonesia for Global Justice
- Way forward for Africa: Kiiza Africa, SEATINI, Uganda
- National campaigns in developed countries: representative from Both Ends, Netherlands
- Way forward for Africa: representative from TWN-Africa or SEATINI Uganda