Trade & investment

Updated ICC recommendations for a WTO agreement on trade facilitation

  • 11 November 2016

ICC welcomes the substantive progress in the WTO negotiation on trade facilitation toward a rules-based agreement that contains meaningful disciplines. The current text is a good foundation for a final agreement that would be a major step toward full realization of the benefits of trade liberalization.

A trade facilitation agreement is fundamental to the establishment of an improved and more efficient management process for international trade in goods on a global basis. All WTO member countries will benefit from it — especially those burdened with the least efficient trading processes, either through infrastructure or managerial limitations or because of procedural barriers being imposed by trading partners.

ICC is committed to assisting the WTO and its member countries to realize the full benefits of international trade through a trade facilitation agreement that encourages improved border management and discourages both inefficient and artificially complex or burdensome border procedures.

To realize these benefits for all parties, the WTO trade facilitation negotiations should be concluded as soon as possible. The elements of a strong agreement are already in the third generation draft. WTO members should make binding commitments to as many of these elements as possible. In view of the high level of ben it for all members, it would be in their interest to begin the process of implementing the elements of such an agreement without waiting for the formal conclusion of the Doha Development Agenda.