25 Aug 2023 15:38

Disagreements inside G20 on how to restore system of trade dispute resolution in WTO still exist-Ministry

MOSCOW. Aug 25 (Interfax) - G20 trade ministers reaffirmed the importance of fully restoring the system for resolving trade disputes in the WTO by 2024, but disagreements remain on how to do so, the Russian Economy Development Ministry said following a meeting of the G20 trade and investment ministers held on August 24-25 in Jaipur, India.

India has prioritized reform of the World Trade Organization, strengthening global value chains, integrating micro, small and medium enterprises into international trade, and the digitalization of logistics as priorities for its trade presidency.

"The final agreements, among other things, confirm the commitment of all participants in the multilateral trading system and the importance of increasing its efficiency, including through the speedy reform of the World Trade Organization," the ministry said.

"Even in the current crisis conditions, the WTO remains the only multilateral platform capable of directing the potential of international trade to the benefit of global development," Vladimir Ilyichev, Deputy Minister of Economic Development and Trade, and head of the Russian delegation, said.

"The meeting participants confirmed that the reform process should be transparent, open and take the interests of all members into account. They also stressed the importance of restoring a full-fledged WTO dispute resolution system by 2024. However, disagreements among participants regarding ways to achieve this goal remain," the Ministry of Economic Development said.

As reported, the appellate body in the WTO dispute resolution system has not been working since December 2019 due to the actions of the United States, which blocked the appointment of new members to it. Because of this, the decisions of the WTO courts are unenforceable because countries often challenge them in the non-functioning appellate body.

The WTO Ministerial Conference in June 2022 set the task of restoring a full-fledged dispute resolution system by 2024, but so far there has been little progress apart from declarations about the importance of doing so.