The COVID-19 pandemic was a recurring theme at the meeting of the WTO’s Committee on Trade Facilitation on 20-21 October. A number of members highlighted how trade facilitation — and the WTO’s Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA) in particular — can be used to help authorities ensure that essential goods related to COVID-19 treatments and equipment can cross borders and reach their intended recipients quickly.
Several members made presentations during the committee meeting regarding initiatives they have taken to facilitate trade during the COVID-19 pandemic. The United States, Brazil, Colombia and Japan issued a joint call for accelerated implementation of the TFA, arguing that cross-border trade is a critical channel for getting essential products to those who need them. The committee also reviewed more than 70 notifications from members outlining steps taken or planned to implement provisions of the TFA.
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