Uzbekistan’s officials, students sharpen knowledge on trade remedies

05.04.2024 122

Technicians and students learned how to launch, investigate, and impose trade remedy measures in training jointly organized by the ITC and a Tashkent-based university.

Countries join the WTO because it is well established that the benefits of open trade outweigh its risks.

Nevertheless, domestic industries do sometimes suffer from imports. When the injury results from unfair trade practices, or a sudden surge of imports, the WTO allows member countries to defend their industries by means of trade remedies.

The remedies safeguard the interests of local producers by protecting them against unfair competition and nurturing infant industries.

The ITC organized a two-day intensive session from 26-27 March, followed by two days of expert-focused technical discussions with the negotiating team on WTO accession, to unpack these defence measures for Uzbek officials.

The training is the fifth course in the Trade Policy Accelerator Programme, organized by the ITC. It is part of continued efforts to hardwire deep knowledge on WTO topics for Uzbekistan’s journey towards WTO membership.

Unfair trade, or infant industry protection

Trade remedies can be applied by governments on imports in three possible instances.

The first two instances relate to unfair trade practices that have harmed domestic producers. If imports are dumped or subsidized and this is found to have injured the competing domestic industry, anti-dumping and countervailing measures, respectively, can be applied.

The third category of trade defence relates to a surge of imported products that have caused, or may cause, serious injury to a local industry. In this case the harm does not stem from an unfair trade practice. Rather, the remedy is an emergency action to stabilize the home industry by putting in place safeguard measures.

Building robust trade defence capacity in Uzbekistan is, therefore, crucial to safeguard the country's trade interests and ensure fair competition.

The training introduced participants to the three agreements governing defence measures. They learned the formulas used to calculate dumping, subsidy and injury margins, and how to apply them. Several case studies illustrated the theory while practical experience was gained by simulating real-life scenarios.

The training took place at UWED’s campus and online.

Among the 20 participants, most were technicians who will be responsible for the new institutions to administer trade remedies. Students of UWED also benefited from the training, which was funded by the European Union under the project Facilitating the process of Uzbekistan’s accession to the WTO.

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