The E15 engages key stakeholders – trade and investment policy makers, business and thought leaders – in policy dialogues in Geneva and around the world to explore and help validate ideas, align interests and strengthen the impetus for change.

RTA Exchange Dialogues

Latin America in the Global Trade System: Priorities for the Region on the G20 Trade and Investment Agenda

05 April 2017 , Palacio Duhau, Buenos Aires, Argentina - 16:00 - 17:00

On 5 April, ICTSD organised an informal roundtable dialogue bringing together Latin American trade ministers in partnership with the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) and the World Economic Forum System Initiative on Shaping the Future of International Trade and Investment.

Innovations in information and communication technologies (ICTs), combined with the explosive growth of the digital economy, are increasingly blurring the borders of national economies. In addition, over the last year, prospects for economic integration and the evolution of the international trade and investment regime have suffered setbacks with the Brexit vote and the election of a government in the White House that has introduced critical changes in the international trade order. The electoral debate in several countries key for the global economy has focused on the impacts of globalisation on the distribution of wealth, inequity, and the environment. All this occurs in a moment when the global trade and investment system has become more complex.

The G20 is currently the only instance of intergovernmental deliberation with the intrinsic competitive advantage of being able to consider the whole system, from the multilateral level of the WTO to regional agreements, proposals for mega-regional consolidation, and the changing investment regime. In this context, the effective coordination of macroeconomic and growth policies established in the G20 also assumes increasing relevance, even more now that the G20 has gone from the monitoring and containment of protectionism to a pro-active dynamic of vision for and coordination of the complex global trade system since China’s 2016 G20 Presidency.

The present high-level Informal Ministerial Dialogue also brought together a select group of international experts and analysts from academia and international organisations, with the intention of exploring the priorities for the region in the G20 and the recently created Trade and Investment Working Group.  The G20 presidency, to be taken over by Argentina at the conclusion of 2017, represents a unique opportunity for Latin America to discuss and eventually promote its agenda in this moment of perplexity about the future of economic integration.

Speakers included:

  • Gustavo BELIZ, Director of the Institute for the Integration of Latin America and the Caribbean (INTAL) of the Inter-American Development Bank
  • Felix PEÑA, Director del Instituto para el Comercio Internacional, Fundación ICBC
  • Ricardo MELÉNDEZ-ORTIZ, Chief Executive, ICTSD
  • Richard SAMANS, Managing Director and Member of the Managing Board, World Economic Forum