Ai Group supports global initiative to reform World Trade Organisation

The Ai Group added its voice to a global business initiative to urge reform of the World Trade Organisation and the rebuilding of trust in globalisation at an annual meeting of the Global Business Coalition, held in New Delhi in mid-February.

Ai Group chief executive, Innes Willox, representing Australia at the meeting, led discussions on digitalisation, in an effort to garner support for global regulatory coherence in this essential fuel of the modern economy.

“The impact of protectionist measures on goods such as tariffs and quotas is immediate and obvious. However, the emergence of protectionist interventions into data laws don’t only add costs to international business, but risk curtailing innovation and limiting the benefits of digitalisation.

“As a group of national industry associations, representing the interests of over 20 million small, medium and large companies, we also discussed the responsibilities of companies in data governance and the need to have global norms on best practice.

“A key element in repairing trust in globalisation and the global business community is to address the loss of confidence that data breaches has caused across the world,” said Willox.

The Global Business Coalition is concerned about the future of global cooperation.

Miguel Alberto Acevedo assumed the Global Business Coalition Presidency on February 12 for a two-year term.

As the president, he will call on the G20 to strengthen multilateral cooperation, develop a positive agenda on digital transformation and make the organisation fit for 21st century trade patterns.

The Global Business Coalition is committed to supporting governments in developing an inclusive reform agenda in order to contribute to sustainable growth and rebuild trust in globalisation within the society.

“The Global Business Coalition represents an instrumental platform to rely on by representing the voice of enterprise within the G20 process and other major international fora. It enables synergies and cooperation among major business organisations that commit to the free market economy, fair trade and investment, and the imminent importance of the rule of law,” said Acevedo.

The Global Business Coalition brings together sixteen leading independent business associations from the major world economies.

The coalition met with representatives of the government of India and leaders of Indian and international industries to discuss trade and investment, resource efficiency and digitalisation.