Statement to the Senate
Senator the Honourable A. J. Nicholson Q.C.
Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade
Friday, 15th January, 2016
Outcome of the Tenth WTO Ministerial Conference (MC10)
Nairobi, Kenya, 15th -19th December, 2015
I am pleased to report on the outcome of the 10th Session of the Ministerial Conference of the World Trade Organisation (MC10), held in Nairobi, Kenya, 15th to 19th December 2015.
This meeting was significant for many reasons, beginning with the fact that the trade in goods and services remains the engine of global growth and must play a significant role in any effort to achieve the United Nations goals agreed in Agenda 2030. Indeed, global trade accounts for 60 per cent of global GDP.
It is precisely because of the importance of trade to all aspects of economic development that the 10th WTO Ministerial Conference was seen as a crucial Conference.
The rules that govern global trade are set by the WTO. Any change to these rules is measured in terms of the impact on the share of trade of affected Members. No change is made lightly and every issue is analysed and checked with this in mind.
Jamaica has consistently placed high importance on multilateral trade issues in the WTO of which we are a founding Member. We have done so, recognising that without clear rules, small vulnerable economies, like Jamaica’s, will be even more disadvantaged in the highly competitive arena of international trade.
The fact is that all of Jamaica’s trade, whether in goods or services, is affected by the rules of the WTO. Ordinary trade is conducted in line with the Most Favoured Nation principle of the WTO, while the special trade arrangements, such as those with the US under the CBI; Canada under CARIBCAN; the EU under the EPA; and intra-regional trade under the CARICOM Single Market and Economy (CSME) are also governed by the rules of the WTO…READ MORE