VP Boakai Hails Liberia’s Strides to Accede to the World Trade Organization

Liberian Vice President Joseph N. Boakai has hailed the steps taken by Liberia to accede to the World Trade Organization, noting that the move will improve the economy and livelihood of the Liberian people.

Vice President Boakai said he looks forward to the realization of the accession, and thanked the team led by Commerce Minister Axel Addy for the level of work done so far on the accession document and other processes.

Vice President Boakai made the commendation Wednesday when the Deputy Secretary of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), Mr.Joakim Reiter, and Mr. Chiedu Osakwe, Director of the Accession Division of the World Trade Organization accompanied by the Minister of Commerce, Axel M. Addy, paid a courtesy call on him at his Capitol Building office.

In remarks during the meeting, Mr. Joakin Reiter said Liberia has made remarkable achievement in the process leading to accession to the WTO and that Liberia has commanded strong support in the process.

He pointed out that being a member of the WTO ensures market access, make the country resilient from economic downturns and that the package for the accession to the World Trade Organization must reflect national ambitions.

The delegation informed the Vice President on a number of issues that are critical to the process including the enactment of laws to enable the smooth implementation of the accession.

Also in remarks, Mr. Chiedu Osakwe, Director of the Accession Division of the World Trade Organization, said it is not a choice for Liberia to be a member; it is about Liberia integrating in the regional value and global value chains, because domestic standards will be raised to global standards, adding that it is about a country that cares about their position in the world.

He stressed that accession to the WTO is not a routine exercise, a release from the Office of the Vice President said.

The World Trade Organization (WTO) is the only global international organization dealing with the rules of trade between nations. At its heart are the WTO agreements, negotiated and signed by the bulk of the world’s trading nations and ratified in their parliaments. The goal is to help producers of goods and services, exporters, and importers conduct their business.

The World Trade Organization (WTO) deals with the global rules of trade between nations. Its main function is to ensure that trade flows as smoothly, predictably and freely as possible. Its functions include administering WTO trade agreements, Forum for trade negotiations, handling trade disputes, monitoring national trade policies, technical assistance and training for developing countries and cooperation with other international organizations.

Located in Geneva, Switzerland, it was established in 1995 and created by the Uruguay Round negotiations from 1986 to 1994, with a current membership of 161 countries. Liberia is the only country in ECOWAS that has not acceded to the WTO.

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