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Draft G-20 statement stresses urgency of WTO reform

OSAKA, Japan — G-20 leaders will issue an urgent call this weekend for reform of the World Trade Org..

OSAKA, Japan — G-20 leaders will issue an urgent call this weekend for reform of the World Trade Org..

OSAKA, Japan — G-20 leaders will issue an urgent call this weekend for reform of the World Trade Organization, which has been under increased stress since Donald Trump became U.S. president, according to a draft statement reviewed by POLITICO.

“The rules-based multilateral trading system is at a critical juncture, facing unprecedented challenges,” the draft statement says. “To restore confidence in the system, we will reiterate our support for necessary WTO reform, and work constructively with other WTO members … to undertake it with a sense of urgency, including in the lead-up to the Twelfth WTO Ministerial Conference.”

The 164 members of the WTO are scheduled to hold their next ministerial conference in Astana, Kazakhstan, in June 2020.

The Trump administration complains the nearly 25-year-old organization fails to adequately address many of the challenges posed by Chinas state-run economy. But reforming the WTO is difficult since any member, particularly the most powerful ones, can block new rules.

G-20 leaders agreed last December the rules-based world trade system “is currently falling short of its objectives and there is room for improvement.” TheyRead More – Source