The WTO Before, During and After Corona


of the Royal Netherlands Society of International Law

to be held online on

Wednesday 24 JUNE 2020 16.00 – 17.00 Hrs (cet)

The WTO, established on 1 January 1995, has for a long time been one of the success stories of international law. This is largely due to its track record in the settlement of disputes: since 1995, 595 disputes have been brought to the WTO, while over 350 rulings have been issued. However, in recent times, the Organization has been challenged by, inter alia, inconclusive discussions on multilateral trade, a growing emphasis on nationalism and protectionism, at least in some states, the lack of attention to the position of developing states (despite the 2013 ‘Bali Package’), the blocking of the appointment of judges in the Dispute Settlement Body, and, in recent times, the nearly unforeseeable trade consequences of COVID-19.

For obvious reasons, the Society’s traditional ‘Voorjaarsvergadering’ (Spring Meeting) cannot take its usual shape this year. The Board of the Society therefore invites its Members and others who are interested to attend this online meeting. The event will have an informative as well as forward-looking character, and will be introduced by Prof. Peter Van den Bossche, judge in the WTO Appellate Body from 2009 to 2019, Professor of International Economic Law, University of Bern, and Director of Studies, World Trade Institute, Bern. Prof. Van den Bossche is an honorary professor at Maastricht University, the Netherlands (since 2018), and a visiting professor at the LUISS Guido Carli University, Rome, Italy (since 2016), at the Universidad San Francisco de Quito, Ecuador (since 2016), and at the College of Europe, Bruges, Belgium (since 2010).

The event will run for one hour, with half an hour being reserved for the introductory lecture by Prof. Van den Bossche and half an hour for Q&A and some discussion, depending on the time available.

Date and Time:            Wednesday 24 June 2020, 16.00-17.00 hrs (CET), via Zoom.

Registration:                Members and non-members are welcome to attend. Registration is required. Please register for free by Monday 22 June 2020 by sending an email to .gro.1720836482rivnk1720836482@ofni1720836482