This is a key deliverable of central importance for the international economy

Looking ahead to the WTO’s Ninth Ministerial Conference, in Bali, Indonesia, the B20 Coalition (now known as the Global Business Coalition) urges G20 leaders and all WTO member nations to press ahead with a bold Trade Facilitation Agreement that will provide tangible benefits for industry and trade.

In preparation for the upcoming Ministerial Conference in Bali, the B20 Coalition calls on the G20 leaders and all WTO member nations to push ahead in the negotiations and conclude an ambitious Trade Facilitation Agreement. This is a key deliverable of central importance for the international economy.

Coalition President Perrin Beatty stated that “such a Trade Facilitation Agreement will provide tangible improvements for industry and trade. Customs clearance will speed up, and the movement of goods will rise”. The potential payoffs for the world are substantial and far-reaching: a USD 1 trillion increase in GDP and 20.6 million jobs. Exports of developing countries could rise by approximately USD 570 billion, and exports of developed countries by USD 475 billion, a Peterson Institute study concluded.

The G20 should take a leading role in bringing the negotiations to a successful conclusion, which will:

promote trade by lowering administrative procedures and costs at borders, simplify rules and increase transparency, thus facilitating the enforcement of customs services, and save money for companies and consumers by reducing the administrative burden at borders.

Trade facilitation does not alter the market access balance between WTO members. It is an ideal tool to boost growth in a balanced way for all WTO members.

The B20 Coalition members support the work of the negotiators towards: reduction or elimination of fees and charges; right of legal appeal; single administrative window; publication of regulations related to customs procedure; simplified and expedited customs release and clearance procedures; and provisions for technical and financial assistance to least developed countries.

Moreover, we welcome the inclusion of many positive measures in the draft agreement. For example, documents can be processed in advance (before the merchandise arrives), and goods may be released before dues are settled. These measures will prove very beneficial by smoothing production processes across all sectors.

On the other hand, the negotiators are called upon to retouch the simplifying enhancements for “authorized economic operators” (AEOs) that have an approved trust record with the authorities. AEOs merit a further reduction of bureaucratic procedures like the advance notifications for imports and exports. Country-specific customs documents and systems should be complemented by equivalent company documents and systems.

The Ninth Ministerial Conference in Bali is scheduled to take place December 3-6, 2013.

This statement is issued in Berlin, Brasilia, Brussels, Buenos Aires, Istanbul, Johannesburg, Madrid, Mexico-City, New Delhi, Ottawa, Paris, Rome, Seoul, Sydney, and Washington DC by the B20 Coalition members. B20 Coalition members Ai Group, Australia· BDI, Germany · BUSA, South Africa · BUSINESSEUROPE, Europe · CCC, Canada · CEOE, Spain · CII, India · CNI, Brazil · Confindustria, Italy · Coparmex, Mexico · FKI, South Korea · MEDEF, France · TÜSIAD, Turkey · UIA, Argentina · US Chamber, USA ·

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