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31st and 32nd WTO Trade Policy Courses begin

31st and 32nd WTO Trade Policy Courses begin

The 31st and 32nd WTO Trade Policy Courses opened in Geneva on 17 January 2005. Mr. Paul Rolian, Director of the Institute for Training and Technical Co-operation, welcomed the 45 participating officials from developing countries and economies in transition.

The overall objective of the two courses, which will run in parallel until 8 April 2005, is to widen participants' understanding of trade policy matters, the multilateral trading system, international trade law and the functioning of the WTO. It is expected that the knowledge acquired during these courses will allow participants to contribute to the promotion of a more active participation of their countries in the work of the WTO.

Throughout the three-month training course, officials will become acquainted — through lectures, debates, attendance at WTO meetings and simulation exercises — with virtually all the issues dealt with in the framework of the WTO. Visits to other international organizations located in Geneva will also allow them to become acquainted with trade-related aspects of the work conducted by these organizations.

Mr. Rolian invited participants to actively take part in the forthcoming training and to develop and strengthen a solid network of contacts by attending WTO meetings and discussing with delegates, WTO experts, and representatives of other organizations.

The 31st and 32nd Trade Policy Courses launch the WTO training season this year. Two other courses will take place in Geneva and five similar courses, organized in cooperation with regional academic partners, will be held in Jamaica, Hong Kong-China, Morocco, Chile, and Namibia. A series of shorter courses will complement the Geneva-based programme while a large number of national and regional technical cooperation activities will take place in the field as part of the 2005 WTO Technical Cooperation and Training Plan.

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