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.

Trade and Development Symposium

The digital economy and innovation: Game changers for the multilateral trading system?

16 December 2015 , Nairobi, Kenya - 15:15 - 16:45

Innovation is widely recognised as a key driver of economic growth and prosperity that is actively pursued by governments and business alike. At the same time, the digital economy has been a potent source of innovation and is significantly changing how trade works. Digital solutions are used to sell and deliver products and services, while businesses move data across borders as an intrinsic part of their daily operations.

In this session, E15 experts on the Digital Economy and Innovation identified the key barriers and constraints faced by businesses engaged in digital trade and discuss how the global trade system can ameliorate this environment and offer new opportunities for developing countries, LDCs, and SMEs to engage in international trade. The speakers also evaluated whether the WTO is well-equipped to accompany the growing digitalisation of economic activity and trade.

Trade & Development Symposium

Building on ICTSD’s twenty-year history of encouraging innovative thinking on trade and sustainable development issues at WTO Ministerial Conferences, 2015’s Trade and Development Symposium (TDS) acted as a crucial platform for intellectual enquiry and dialogue on the future of the multilateral trading system. The E15Initiative stream at the Trade and Development Symposium focused on dialogue around the key deliverables the Initiative’s world class experts released in January 2016 at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. Discussions provided an exclusive preview of the policy options that have been developed over four years by some of the world’s most pre-eminent trade policy experts.