The multilateral component of European Union commercial policy: the WTO

France, in common with the rest of the European Union, is committed to the multilateral trade system, which remains a priority for the European Union’s commercial policy. France is keen to see the emergence of new players (Brazil, China, India, etc.) accompanied by symmetry in concessions on a basis of reciprocity and argues for greater differentiation between least developed countries, emerging countries and industrialised countries. France has lobbied, and will continue to lobby, for the consolidation of duty-free and quota-free market access for all products originating from LDCs on the part of the United States and the leading emerging countries, on the same principle as the "Everything But Arms" initiative adopted by the European Union 2001.

France is keen to make progress on the facilitation of trade, and supports the European Commission in its participation in the plurilateral initiative on services instituted by the United States and Australia. The fight against protectionism, which gained considerable encouragement at the Cannes G20 Summit under the French Presidency, is reinforcing the role of the WTO in monitoring the measures adopted by its members and in the regulation of world trade. This is reflected in particular in the development of work on a certain number of new topics such as investment, subsidies, export financing, trade and foreign exchange, corruption, where international rules are inadequate, and in a reinforcement of the role of the Dispute Settlement Body, on which France has submitted a number of proposals to the Commission, particularly as regards improving the professional competencies of the panellists.

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(Source: website of the Permanent Representation of France to the European Union)

(Updated: 16.05.13)