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MEXICO: High Level Symposium to Enhance Regulator Expertise on the WTO Agreement on Technical Barriers to Trade

Date: February 9-10, 2016
Location: Casa de California, Carmen No 1, Chimalistac, Del. Álvaro Obregón, CP 01070, Mexico City, Mexico

The Standards Alliance held a “High Level Symposium to Enhance Regulator Expertise on the WTO Agreement on Technical Barriers to Trade” in conjunction with the Secretariat of Economy of Mexico (SE). The audience included over 70 high-level representatives from Mexican regulatory agencies.

MATERIALS

SUMMARY

Experts provided presentations and keynote speeches on a variety of topics related to good regulatory practices and regulatory cooperation, including:
  • Relevance of the WTO Agreement on Technical Barriers to Trade
  • Regulatory Impact Assessment and Cost-Benefit Risk Analysis
  • Technical Regulations – How to Develop, Adopt and Implement Qualitative, Necessary and Effective Regulations?”
  • The WTO Jurisprudence on TBT Disciplines Regarding Technical Regulations and Standards
  • Different Approaches to Conformity Assessment – How to Ensure That We Choose the Best Conformity Assessment Procedures Available, Given our Options
  • Advancing Implementation TBT and Regulatory Coherence in Trade Agreements and the Work of the WTO TBT Committee
  • Regulatory Cooperation: When and How to Use It?
  • The Private Sector Perspective Regarding the Elaboration, Adoption and Implementation of Technical Regulations and Conformity Assessment Procedures

During keynote remarks, Jeff Weiss of the Office of the Secretary at U.S. Department of Commerce noted that this high level symposium was extremely timely and comes at an exciting time for regulatory cooperation. Weiss identified several advancements and strategic opportunities including those in the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) in which both Mexico and the U.S. participate.

The two-day symposium featured perspectives from high-level officials from both the U.S. and Mexico. The U.S. government was well-represented, with speakers and moderators from agencies such as the Department of Commerce, U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR), the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), and from ANSI members including UL as moderator and Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers (AHAM) and Intertek as speakers. The Mexican regulators included representatives from Federal Commission for Regulatory Improvement (COFEMER), Secretariat of Economy of Mexico (SE), and Dirección General de Normas (DGN). The World Trade Organization (WTO) also participated heavily in the two-day discussions.

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