Uncertainties among major global trading partners and in the international rules-based trading system are generating a sense of growing instability in the world economy. New technologies are changing the employment landscape at a pace never seen, and we are at the beginning of historic revolutions from agriculture to digital payments, among others, with the potential for profound impacts on LDCs. With countries interconnected at multiple levels, including trade, migration and the natural resources sectors, the situation for LDCs is uncertain and challenging.

This plenary session gathered ministerial-level officials from LDCs and high-level speakers to discuss the integration of LDCs into regional and global trading systems amid economic and political risk and uncertainty. The session focussed on past, current, and likely future opportunities and challenges for strengthening the participation and presence of LDCs in global and regional trading systems. The discussion included the different roles of stakeholder groups and partnerships, and the alliances required for LDCs to integrate and benefit more fully from global trade.

Moderator:

  • Sean Doherty, Head of International Trade and Investment System Initiave, Member of the Executive Committee, World Economic Forum (WEF)

Speakers:

  • Arancha González, Executive Director of the International Trade Centre (ITC)
  • Werikhe Michael Kafabusa, State Minister for Trade in the Cabinet of Uganda
  • Patricia Scotland, Baroness Scotland of Asthal PC QC, Secretary-General of The Commonwealth
  • Kamrang Tekreth, Secretary of State, Ministry of Commerce, Cambodia

Presentation:

  • Joost Pauwelyn, Professor of International Law at the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies in Geneva, Switzerland

The Global Forum on Inclusive Trade for LDCs would not have been possible without the financial support of the EIF Trust Fund Donors and additional Forum sponsors, including International Islamic Tade Finance CorporationTrade Facilitation Agreement Facility and German Development Cooperation