ITC Executive Director statement at WTO General Council
Speech by ITC Executive Director, Ms Arancha González
World Trade Organization (WTO) General Council, 9 September 2013
Thank you, Chairman.
On behalf of the International Trade Centre, I would like to formally extend a welcome to the Director-General of the World Trade Organization, Roberto Azevêdo.
I would also wish to express ITC’s commitment to ensuring that the relationship between the two institutions is strengthened.
Both organizations share the philosophy of working for and towards greater global cooperation. We share the responsibility to ensure that the global good of the multilateral trading system delivers on its promise and especially so for the least developed and most vulnerable Members. Finding the right mix of trade and development is where the solution will lay and I am confident that you will continue to expand and deepen the role that the WTO will play in supporting trade-led growth and development premised on transparent and predictable trade rules.
The role of ITC is to empower small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to realize their trade potential and use this to grow the economy, create jobs and reduce poverty. SMEs are the future engines of growth for many developing countries. They must be supported and the connection between the multilateral rules agreed to in Geneva and the operationalization of these rules on the ground, inter alia, through the work of ITC, must be enhanced. I intend to work closely with Director-General Azevêdo and UNCTAD Secretary-General Kituyi to ensure that the WTO, UNCTAD and ITC work in partnership and in tandem with a common aim of supporting more and better trade and sustainable development.
As Executive Director, the views and needs of ITC’s clients will take priority. The needs of the partner countries and their private sector and trade promotion authorities will be the basis of our future work. ITC’s programming and delivery will be demand-driven and led by robust assessments of the priorities of our Membership. The development partners – both traditional and non-traditional donors – as well as other agencies involved in trade-related technical assistance, will be true partners in helping to grow the reach and impact of ITC’s work. I look forward to working with this community of trade and development specialists to increase the frontiers of ITC’s effectiveness.
Thank you for your attention.