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  • WEDF 
  • Adapting to post-crisis world trade patterns, and lessons for export development

    Chongqing, China - 9-21 September

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    Forum confirms commitment to export-led growth
    Rethink necessary on trade strategies and goals
    Necessity of trade in post-crisis environment
    Media Advisory  

    11 September 2010 - Forum confirms commitment to export-led growth

    The 11th World Export Development Forum (WEDF) wound up here today with the more than 300 delegates from 60 countries expressing optimism about trade growth in the post-crisis era and reaffirming their commitment to the export-led growth model.

    Two days of intensive discussion covered topics including the current state of world trade; boosting competitiveness through innovative financial mechanisms; the new realities of the global supply chain; the importance of strategic partnerships for business success; emerging private standards and their impact on trade; the need to empower women in business to power trade; and thinking ahead and planning for the short and long-term future.

    In the closing plenary session, Mr. Long Yongtu, Secretary-General of China’s Centre for the Study of the G20, said that despite some criticism from developed countries, China’s reliance on exports would continue. “China needs to rely on exports as the engine of economic growth and poverty reduction,” Mr. Long told the Forum.

    However he also said: “It is our intention to gradually turn China from an export-led growth pattern to a domestic consumption growth pattern. That is the intention, but it will take time.”

    ITC Executive Director Patricia R. Francis, in her closing statement, said the mood of the meeting was optimistic: “It helps that we are seeing positive signs of recovery. It also helps that you are all adopting the outstanding Chinese characteristic of pragmatism, which helps us to see and realize the opportunities in this crisis,” she said.

    She described a number of conclusions reached during the meeting:

    That the world was still perhaps not as globalized as some people thought, and this meant there were opportunities for business to exploit;

    That the large emerging economies will need to balance growth of domestic demand with boosting exports;

    That companies and countries should focus on increasing the value rather than the volume of exports;

    That regional integration was vital, particularly in Africa and small island regions such as the Caribbean and the Pacific;

    That South-South trade between developing countries and emerging markets will become one of the most important drivers for trade and growth;

    That companies and countries need to think long-term and incentives should be devised to encourage this;

    That the trade in services will expand, and tourism represents an easy entry for many least developed countries.

    Ms. Francis announced that while the Forum was going on, agreement had been reached on a four party collaboration between ITC, the Ministry of Commerce of the People’s Republic of China (MOFCOM), the China Council for the Promotion of International Trade (CCPIT), and the Chongqing Foreign Trade and Economic Relations Commission (COFTEC).

    A comprehensive 10-point work plan would be implemented in the coming years covering areas including market analysis, sector development programmes and business match-making.

    A second important initiative had resulted from a roundtable meeting for senior executives on gender-specific procurement. This was the establishment of the Chongqing Platform for Action on Sourcing from Women Vendors. This aimed to facilitate the exchange of ideas and best practice on sourcing from women vendors and increase women’s share of corporate, government and institutional procurement.

    After the announcements, Mr Li Jian Chun, the Director of COFTEC, said of the four party collaboration: “This must be a prototype and success story of Chongqing in export development.” His deputy, Professor Li Shirong, said of the Platform of Action: “Knowing each other is the beginning; coming together is progress; working together is success.”

    Chongqing is China’s 4th municipality and one of the country’s fastest growing cities. Tomorrow participants at the Forum will have the opportunity to visit a number of businesses in the city before departing.

    ITC is the joint agency of WTO and the United Nations and is devoted to helping SMEs in developing countries become more competitive in global markets and thus to speed up sustainable economic development and contribute to the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals.

    Contact: Jacquelyn Campo
    Senior officer, Corporate Communications and Events
    P: +41 22 730 0457
    E: wedf(at)intracen(dot)org

    10 September 2010 - Rethink necessary on trade strategies and goals

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    Trade strategies in the wake of the financial crisis need to focus on long-term sustainable growth, rather than short-term fixes. That is according to Ms. Patricia Francis, Executive Director of ITC, as she opened the proceedings of the first full day of the World Export Development Forum 2010 (WEDF) in Chongqing, China.

    Ms. Francis warned the audience of 300 business experts that short-term thinking could lead to protectionism and loss of trust and confidence because of a focus on avoiding risk rather than on making things happen.

    Keynote speaker Professor Pankaj Ghemawat told participants that in order for countries to make progress in trade, they must address three key issues: the real extent of globalization; the extent of barriers constraining trade; and understanding the broad gains that trade can deliver.

    Professor Ghemawat also identified five features that are needed to facilitate trade not only in the current financial climate, but in times of global economic stability, as well. The five items are: a common language; membership of a regional trading bloc; a relationship between former colony and colonizer; a common currency and a land border.

    “Countries that share all five elements,” said Professor Ghemawat, “will trade significantly more than countries which do not share them.”

    During the plenary session “The State of World Trade”, experts including the Minister of Trade from Indonesia, Dr. Mari E. Pengestu, and the Minister of Trade and Industry from South Africa, Dr. Rob Davies, were agreed that dynamic growth could be expected in the emerging markets in the developing world, with a particular emphasis in South-South trade which is expanding at twice the rate of global trade.

    The remaining two days of the WEDF will continue to focus on the state of world trade in the post-crisis era.

    ITC is the joint agency of World Trade Organization and the United Nations and is devoted to helping SMEs in developing countries become more competitive in global markets.

    Contact: Jacquelyn Campo
    Senior officer, Corporate Communications and Events
    P: +41 22 730 0457
    E: wedf(at)intracen(dot)org  

    9 September 2010 Necessity of trade in post-crisis environment

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    The World Export Development Forum (WEDF) was officially opened in Chongqing, China on 9 September 2010 by the Executive Director of the International Trade Centre (ITC), Ms. Patricia R. Francis.

    The WEDF brings together business experts from around the world to discuss innovations in export development and export competitiveness. The theme of this year’s WEDF is ‘Adapting to Post-Crisis World Trade Patterns, and Lessons for Export Development’. It is hosted by ITC, the Ministry of Commerce of the People’s Republic of China (MOFCOM), the China Council for the Promotion of International Trade (CCPIT), and the City of Chongqing, the 4th municipality of China.

    In welcoming the more than 300 guests from around the world, Ms. Francis noted the significance of holding the WEDF in Chongqing, saying, “In the next few days, you will see a city on the move that has risen above the export challenges presented by its location.”

    Mr. Yi Xiaozhun, Vice-Minister of MOFCOM, emphasized the importance of exports, saying through trade, many countries, including China, had achieved sustainable economic growth.

    The Mayor of Chongqing Municipal Government, Mr. Huang Qi Fan, said in his opening remarks that his city enjoyed a growth rate of 17% in the first seven month of this year, adding, “Chongqing is aiming to become the engine for growth in central China.”
    Vice-Chairman Mr. Wang Jinzhen of CCPIT said he hopes the conference outcomes would include an in-depth analysis and communication of the global trading landscape.

    Dr. Supachai Panitchpakdi, Secretary-General of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), and Mr. Pascal Lamy, Director-General of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) endorsed the conference and ITC’s work and will be actively participating in the Forum.

    The WEDF will look at the strategies employed by companies, trade support institutions and policy makers to mitigate the negative impacts of the crisis, through the diversification of markets and product as well as service development strategies.

    Participants will take a comprehensive look into a variety of export issues including the state of world trade, increasing competitiveness through innovation and financial mechanisms, and long-term potential for export-led growth.

    ITC is the joint agency of WTO and the United Nations and is devoted to helping SMEs in developing countries become more competitive in global markets and thus to speed up sustainable economic development and contribute to the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals.

    For more information:
    Contact: Jacquelyn Campo
    Senior officer, Corporate Communications and Events
    P: +41 22 730 0457
    E: wedf(at)intracen(dot)org
    www.intracen.org  

       
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