GFM Network News


Incoming WTO director-general Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala takes part in an online meeting before speaking during an interview with Reuters in Potomac, Maryland on Feb. 15, 2021. (Photo: Reuters/Joshua Roberts)

Nigeria’s Okonjo-Iweala makes history as new head of WTO

Geneva-based body leaderless for six months; Trump paralyzed some of WTO's functions

Geneva/Washington | Reuters — Three months after the Trump administration rejected her, former Nigerian finance minister Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala received unanimous backing on Monday to become the first woman and first African director-general of the World Trade Organization. A self-declared “doer” with a track record of taking on seemingly intractable problems, Okonjo-Iweala will have her work

(WTO.org)

Washington says it’s ready to engage on WTO reform

The Biden administration seems set on reinvigorating the handcuffed organization

Reuters – The United States is committed to “positive, constructive and active engagement” with all members of the World Trade Organization on reforming the body and is actively considering who to choose as its next chief, a U.S. official said Jan. 29. The comments by David Bisbee, charge d’affaires at the U.S. mission to the WTO, are


The World Trade Organization (WTO) headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland on Oct. 28, 2020. (Photo: Reuters/Denis Balibouse)

Ban on food aid restrictions blocked at WTO

WTO says outcome 'disappointing' in difficult year

Geneva | Reuters — World Trade Organization members were at odds on Friday over a proposal that would ban countries from restricting food aid deliveries, potentially complicating the response to a feared COVID-fuelled humanitarian catastrophe next year. The proposal was one of two related to the pandemic that failed to make headway at a three-day

An image created by Nexu Science Communication, together with Trinity College in Dublin, shows a model structurally representative of a betacoronavirus, the type of virus linked to COVID-19. (Nexu Science Communication via Reuters)

Irritated trade partners push back on China’s coronavirus food tests

Canada rips testing as 'unjustified trade restrictions'

Beijing/Geneva | Reuters — Major food-producing countries are growing increasingly frustrated with China’s scrutiny of imported products and are calling on it to stop aggressive testing for the coronavirus, which some say is tantamount to a trade restriction. China says it has found the virus on the packaging of products from 20 countries including German

UN bodies want to tackle drought to avert food crisis

Reuters / UN agencies want to strengthen national drought policies after warnings that climate change would increase their frequency and severity. Droughts cause more deaths and displacement than floods or earthquakes, making them the world’s most destructive natural hazard, according to the Food and Agriculture Organization, one of the groups taking part. “We must boost


Vitol plans grain market debut, hires Viterra traders

Reuters / Top oil trader Vitol is building a global grains desk and has taken advantage of Glencore’s takeover of Canadian grains giant Viterra to hire a team of its traders, trading sources said Feb. 20. Vitol, which has an annual turnover of nearly $300 billion, will vie for market share along with rival trading


EU Draft Rules Increase Watchdog Power

European regulators will gain unprecedented powers to control commodity markets through trade caps and heightened intervention if a draft EU document becomes binding, specialist lawyers said Dec. 3. Commodities are being integrated into sweeping reforms to the European Union’s markets in financial instruments directive (MiFID), which was released last month. A draft version seen by