The WTO = World Trade Organization Ministerial Meeting began on the 12th.

On the first day, discussions were held on the current situation in which Russia's invasion of Ukraine has caused prices of food and energy to soar, and the multilateral trading system has been shaken.

The WTO Ministerial Meeting was held in Geneva, Switzerland on the night of the 12th of Japan time, and the opening ceremony was held, and the four-day meeting began.

On the first day, a meeting was held to discuss the issues of the multilateral trading system, and Mr. Hosoda, Deputy Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry, attended from Japan.

The multilateral trading system is one of the WTO's basic principles of promoting trade globally, but Russia's invasion of Ukraine has caused food and energy prices to soar, making food and energy resources available in developing countries. There are situations in which the philosophy is shaken, such as disappearing.

Deputy Minister Hosoda, who spoke at the meeting, criticized Russia for its military invasion, saying that it was "a unilateral attempt to change the status quo by force and a clear violation of international law."

He argued that the international community needs to work as one to keep the multilateral trading system functioning.

In addition to this meeting, a meeting to discuss support for Ukraine was also held by the EU-European Union.

Representatives from about 60 countries and regions, including Japan, attended and issued a statement summarizing support for improving the trading environment in Ukraine and calling for cooperation with other member countries.

Deputy Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry Hosoda "It is necessary to move the WTO forward"

Deputy Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry Hosoda, who responded to the interview after the meeting to discuss the issues of the multilateral trading system, said, "A free and multilateral trading system is important for revitalizing the world economy. I think there was a lot of discussion about supporting and strengthening each country. The rest is how to put it together in a concrete form. "

On top of that, regarding the fact that food and energy prices have soared due to Russia's invasion of Ukraine, making it difficult to obtain in developing countries, "We must firmly move forward with a free and diversified trading system. It is difficult to obtain a system that can replace it, so it is necessary to move the WTO forward based on that recognition. "

In addition, regarding the fact that the WTO Ministerial Meeting is based on a unanimous agreement, Deputy Minister Hosoda said, "There is room for reexamination of the existing rule that even one member country cannot reach an agreement if it opposes it. Isn't it? "

WTO Secretary-General Shows a strong sense of crisis

WTO = World Trade Organization Secretary-General Okonjoi Wara said at a press conference at the headquarters in Geneva on the 12th, "While the world is still dealing with the new coronavirus, the food crisis and energy crisis caused by Russia's invasion of Ukraine It is also underway. It is unprecedented that such a crisis occurs at the same time. "

"The important thing is that no member or country can solve these crises on their own," he said, emphasizing the need for a multilateral framework like the WTO. Did.

Furthermore, regarding the fact that the WTO has not been able to achieve concrete results in recent years, Secretary-General Okonjoi Wara said, "There is no room for negotiations if we say that we want this, and that we want it. We must stop doing this." He said that each country should understand each other's position and find a solution.

Ukrainian trade representative criticizes Russia's "game of hunger"

EU-European Union Senior Vice-Chairman Dombrovskis, who hosted a support meeting for Ukraine during the WTO meeting, told the media that "Russia's obstruction of grain exports was lifted as soon as possible, and Ukrainian farmers did so. We must strive to receive compensation as soon as possible, "he said, saying that the closure of the Ukrainian port would be lifted and that the international community would be encouraged to resume grain exports as soon as possible.

In addition, Ukrainian Trade Representative Taras Kachika thanked the solidarity of WTO member states, saying, "Russia's war has not only ruined the economy in Ukraine and killed thousands of people. It is a threat to the world as a whole in the sense that it is playing a "game of hunger," and criticized Russia for taking food as a hostage and threatening the world.

Statement at Ukraine Assistance Meeting

A statement was issued at a meeting to discuss assistance to Ukraine.

The statement states that Russia's military invasion has had a major impact on world trade and is concerned about its impact on the supply of crops and fertilizers produced in Ukraine in particular.

He said that these effects would add to the severe situation caused by the spread of the new coronavirus, and he said that he would help improve the trading environment in Ukraine and call for cooperation from other member countries.