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2021 BIICL WTO Conference COVID-19 and World Trade: Resilience and Building Back Better

Date: 10 December 2021

Time: 09.30 - 16.30 (UK Time)

Venue: Online

covid 19 effect on trade

Sponsored by

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Conference Details

The British Institute of International and Comparative Law (BIICL) is delighted to announce its prestigious WTO Conference. Established in 2000, the BIICL WTO Conference is one of the most important annual events in international trade law, addressing topical academic and practical issues.

The COVID-19 pandemic represents an unprecedented disruption to the global economy and world trade, as production and consumption of goods and services have scaled back across the globe. At the same time, the WTO and international trade have proven more important than ever during the COVID-19 pandemic, because commerce enabled the delivery of food, medicines, masks and vaccines. The Conference aims to take stock on the challenges posed by the pandemic on international trade and reflect on the solutions discussed and developed to help countries and businesses collaborating and coordinating their actions to mitigate trade and global supply chain disruptions on essential goods and services, to strengthen resilience and "Build Back Better".

The conference will bring together international practitioners, government representatives, academics, businesses, and others to explore emerging ideas and the most recent developments, at a critical time for international trade law. It will consist of four panels addressing COVID-19 and trade related topics, such as health technologies, services, food security and environment. We are pleased to announce that H.E. Ambassador Simon Manley, CMG, UK Mission to the WTO, UN and Other International Organisations (Geneva) will deliver the keynote address.

 Download the full Programme  



09.30 - 09.35 (UK Time)
Dr. Julinda Beqiraj, Maurice Wohl Senior Fellow, Bingham Centre for the Rule of Law, BIICL

Keynote address

09.35-10.00 (UK Time)
H.E. Ambassador Simon Manley, CMG, UK Mission to the WTO, UN and Other International Organisations (Geneva)

Panel 1: Developing and delivering COVID-19 health technologies

10.00-11.30 (UK Time)

  • Dr. Ellen 't Hoen, Director, Medicines Law & Policy / Dr Katrina Perehudoff, Co-director, Law Centre for Health and Life, University of Amsterdam (Moderator).
  • Dr Mariângela Batista Galvão Simão, Assistant Director General, WHO
  • Roger Kampf, Counsellor, Intellectual Property, Government Procurement and Competition Division, WTO
  • Mathew Downham, Sustainable Manufacturing Lead, CEPI
  • Paula Pohja-Hutchinson, Director, Global Policy, Covid-19 Vaccine, Astra Zeneca
  • Hiddo Houben, Deputy Permanent Representative, EU mission to the WTO
  • Dr Ditya Agung Nurdianto, Permanent Mission of the Republic of Indonesia to the UN, the WTO and Other International Organizations (Geneva)

Panel 2: COVID-19 and trade in services

12.00-13.00 (UK Time)

  • Xiaolin Chai, Director, Trade in Services and Investment Division, WTO (Moderator)
  • Antonia Carzaniga, Counsellor, Trade in Services and Investment Division, WTO
  • Pascal Kerneis, Managing Director, European Services Forum (ESF)
  • Courtney Edwards, Australian Permanent Mission to the WTO
  • Shani Griffith-Jack, First Secretary, Permanent Mission of Barbados to the WTO
  • Hamid Mamdouh, King and Spalding LLP, formerly Director of the Services Division of the WTO, and diplomatic service of Egypt

Panel 3: COVID-19 food security and world trade

14.00-15.00 (UK Time)

  • Dr. Doaa Abdel-Motaal, Senior counsellor, Agriculture and Commodities Division, WTO (Moderator)
  • Arnaud Petit, Executive Director, International Grains Council
  • Shenggen Fan, Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR) Board Member
  • Kamal Yakub, Chief Executive Officer, TROTRO Tractor Limited

Panel 4: How can trade support "Building Back Better" and a green recovery?

15.00-16.00 (UK Time)

  • Dr Isabelle Van Damme, Partner, Van Bael and Bellis (Moderator)
  • Christiane Wolff, Secretary to the WTO SPS Committee
  • Dr Michael Mehling, Deputy Director, Center for Energy and Environmental Policy Research (CEEPR), Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)
  • Ludivine Tamiotti, Secretary to the WTO Committee on Trade and Environment
  • Dr. Elena Cima, Lecturer, University of Geneva


16.00-16.30 (UK Time)

Prof Gabrielle Marceau, Senior Counsellor, Research Division, WTO

This Event will be held under the Chatham House Rule

Conference Organisers

This conference is organised by Dr. Julinda Beqiraj, British Institute of International and Comparative Law (BIICL), and Prof. Dr. Gabrielle Marceau, Senior Counsellor at the WTO and BIICL Honorary Senior Fellow.

Join in the conversation @BIICL #2021BIICLWTO

Pricing and Registration

This event is now closed for bookings

CPD Information

This event offers the equivalent of 6 CPD hours.


If you have any queries, please contact the Events team

Event Recording

Please note that our events may be photographed or recorded. These materials will be used for internal and external promotional purposes only by the British Institute of International and Comparative Law. If you object to appearing in recordings or photographs, please contact The Event Team to let us know ahead of the event.

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