The WTO public forum is perhaps the most visible result of the WTO’s revised public relations strategy following its tumultuous 1999 Ministerial Conference in Seattle. In recent years, it has become a major event in the international trade agenda as it transformed from a somewhat academic public outreach exercise to a well-attended ‘marketplace of ideas’ where industry, civil society and Governments discuss trade challenges in an open and constructive environment.
Free and open markets have been a core principle of CCIA since it was founded more than 45 years ago. Trade advantages all nations, as they can focus on production of goods and services most suitable to their resources and workforce. The internet contributes to the majority of such services as digital services are increasingly integrated into manufacturing, agriculture, and other traditional U.S. sectors and as internet usage becomes increasingly cloud-based.
Digital trade is threatened by laws and regulations that hinder the further growth and cross-border delivery of Internet services. Internet companies currently face a number of digital trade barriers that include data and infrastructure localization mandates, filtering and blocking, conflicting rules on liability for intermediaries, imbalanced copyright laws, mandated access to secure technologies and weakening of encryption, discriminatory taxes that target the U.S. tech sector, and excessive export control regimes on high-tech products.
CCIA encourages countries to adopt regulatory and legal frameworks that lower barriers to trade and strengthen user trust in digital services. CCIA engages regularly with trade officials in the United States and the European Union and participates in regulatory reviews and public comment processes around the world.