Business News of 2014-04-29

'Ensure fairness in global trade’

The Dean of the Business School at the Ghana Institute of Management and Public Administration (GIMPA), Professor Samuel Bonsu, has indicated the need for new rules and regulations to ensure fairness in global trade.
As the number of players in global trade increased, the institution of new rules was expected to ease access to markets and ensure fairness in trade across countries in the world, he emphasised.
Prof. Bonsu was speaking at a workshop for experts from 12 African countries in Accra to discuss and develop a framework to aid the Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA) under the Bali Ministerial Declaration in December 2013.
Under the TFA, which was part of the Bali Ministerial Declaration Conference last year, 159 countries within the World Trade Organisation (WTO) signed the agreement to ensure better and higher trade facilitation among nations.
Dubbed the “Post Bali Agenda”, the workshop was to educate representatives of the various countries on the agreement to empower them to make better and fair negotiations at the global trades.
The workshop was jointly organised by GIMPA, the WTO, the African EXIM Bank and the Commonwealth Secretariat and participants discussed topics such as importation and agricultural subsidies.
According to Prof. Bonsu, the craze of globalisation had made international trade more crucial, as the world had become smaller.
“Efforts should be made to maintain the momentum that allowed for the TFA, especially for fairness and respect for the developing nation members of the WTO,” he urged.
He added that Africa and other developing countries had not always been treated fairly in global trade negotiations, meanwhile such agreements including the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) were to facilitate trade among nations.
He said the incompatibility of the EPA trade rules with those of the WTO, made it difficult to define a world of trade without barriers.
Prof. Bonsu, therefore, said he perceived a situation where the only rules that mattered in global trade were those that had been agreed upon by all nations involved.The Head of the Centre for WTO Studies, Prof Abhijit Das, said the workshop, which would be organised across regional levels, would offer the various countries on the WTO the platform to articulate their concerns and views on the agreement to ensure a successful process of the agreement.