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WTO reschedules ministerial, now set for June -Breaking


© Reuters. FILE PHOTO – A logo on the World Trade Organisation building is shown before the ministerial meeting in Geneva to discuss the draft agreement regarding the reduction of subsidies for the fishing industry. This was July 15th, 2021. REUTERS/Denis Balibouse/File PHOTO

GENEVA, (Reuters) – Trade ministers will meet for the first-time in over four years, in June. The World Trade Organization announced Wednesday the dates of the meeting, which aims at breaking down deadlocks in areas such as intellectual property rights for vaccines and fishing subsidies.

The WTO had to cancel its conference in November after Swiss travel restrictions meant that many face-to-face meetings were canceled.

Geneva’s trade watchdog, which is based in Geneva, stated that WTO members had reached an agreement during Tuesday’s General Council meeting to convene the 12th Ministerial Conference at Geneva within the week 13 June.”

It was widely believed that the talks would be a testing of WTO’s effectiveness.

WTO only has one global update in nearly 27 years of existence, red paper-cutting Trade Facilitation Agreement. The WTO’s 164 member countries have not been able to reach agreement at its most recent talks on cutting fishing subsidies or spreading COVID-19 vaccins further.

South Africa, India and South Africa are calling for the waiver of intellectual property rights to vaccines and COVID-19 treatments in order to increase their availability for poorer nations. The U.S. president Joe Biden said that he supported a waiver of vaccine rights.

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