Navigating the World Trade Organization (WTO): Locating and Opening Doors

Apr 27, 2021 18:12 · 7357 words · 35 minute read

Lynda Kellam: Alright, everyone we will go ahead and get started, my name is Lynda Kellam. I am the Chair of GODORT the Government Documents Round Table and I am Lynda Kellam: the Senior Data Librarian at the Cornell Center for Social Sciences and I am joined today with some friends of ours from the Politics, Policy and International Relations section of ACRL, Erin Ackerman Lynda Kellam: who cannot turn on her screen right now but she’s going she’ll say hi in the chat I’m sure and Kenya Flash who is at Yale and she’s she’s waving.

Hi Kenya! Lynda Kellam: So thank you everybody for coming and I’m really excited to have such a big group for our webinar today.

00:45 - Lynda Kellam: This is the Help! I’m an Accidental Government Information Librarian webinar series Lynda Kellam: or ‘Help!’ for short. And the series is brought to you by the American Library Association’s Government Documents Round Table and the NCLA Government Resources Section.

00:59 - Lynda Kellam: In the future GODORT is going to be taking over the webinar series but right now the organizations are working together to bring the series to bring you this series during this transition period, so thank you for coming.

01:12 - Lynda Kellam: You are welcome to chat with us throughout the presentation in the chat box. If you’d like to ask a question, please use the Q and A just because that helps us keep we can keep track of open questions and questions that have been answered.

01:29 - Lynda Kellam: If you have a question for me if you need to ask a direct question, you should be able to choose my name from the chat list, and you can ask me a direct question, if you have technical issues feel free to email me at LMK277@cornell. edu which was put in the chat.

01:48 - Lynda Kellam: And I’ll try to guide you through some solutions, but in the worst case scenario, we are recording this webinar and we’ll have it up on the YouTube channel for Help!, within the next week or two.

02:01 - Lynda Kellam: So I’ll put all of those links in the chat in a second.

02:06 - Lynda Kellam: So we have plans for some webinars coming up on May 27th we’re going to do a webinar on researching state legislatures.

02:16 - Lynda Kellam: And then in June we’re going to be pivoting towards the conference the ALA national conference. We are going to have a presentation on COVID’s impact on marginalized communities.

02:32 - Lynda Kellam: And then we’ll also, then that will be separate from conference and then we’ll also sorry that would be.

02:37 - Lynda Kellam: One session on COVID’s impacts on marginalized communities and we’re going to have another session on the evictions crisis and those will be at ALA Virtual So if you are going to ALA this year, Lynda Kellam: please – or if you are virtually going to ALA please join us for those sessions and we’ll be sending out more information about those soon. July we’re going to take off.

03:00 - Lynda Kellam: So you should go outside. Ithaca is beautiful in July, so I like to Lynda Kellam: go out and swim a lot. And then in August we have an opening so if you are interested, if this sparks an interest in doing a topic that you are very passionate about Lynda Kellam: please get in touch with me and we can see when we could schedule you but August is definitely a month that we would like to schedule a webinar and Lynda Kellam: I’m happy to entertain topics or ideas so just let me know.

03:28 - Lynda Kellam: Alright I’m going to switch over to stop sharing and switch over to Kenya and then I’m going to Lynda Kellam: introduce Katherine.

03:37 - Lynda Kellam: So while we’re switching, Lynda Kellam: So today’s webinar is navigating the World Trade Organization: Locating and Opening Doors.

03:46 - Lynda Kellam: Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish is the librarian for the library of the World Trade Organization.

03:52 - Lynda Kellam: She earned her Master’s in Library and Information Sciences from San Jose State University and her Bachelor’s degree in English, with a minor in German from Lafayette college.

04:02 - Lynda Kellam: Prior to working at the WTO, Katherine also worked at the United Nations Library and Archives in Geneva, Lynda Kellam: the International Union for the Conservation of Nature, and the ILO or the International Labour Organization. Katherine is primarily responsible for technical systems and cataloging but also provides support for research and reference.

04:23 - Lynda Kellam: Thank you very much, Katherine.

04:27 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Thank you very much for this opportunity, I wanted to thank Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: ACRL PPIRS and GODORT. I love the title of this webinar series because it Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: it reassures me that we’re all still learning and there are resources available for when you’re when you’re trying to find your feet. So as, as I was introduced, my name is Katherine, I am the librarian for the World Trade Organization in Geneva, Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: where it is currently sunny.

We didn’t have snow today but anyway I wanted to thank everyone for the opportunity to present.

04:58 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Because while sharing the WTO with you is useful for your learning and making the most of our resources, it’s invaluable for me to understand Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: what is going on outside of the alphabet soup of organizations with which I work in Geneva, and to better able better be able to support the work around the world, so Kenya if you can advance the slide please.

05:28 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Thank you. So just to give you a bit of a bit of an idea of where we’re going today.

05:33 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Now this is not a presentation about the history of the WTO. However, I find that it is useful to understand where we are now and what is at our disposal by understanding, where we came from.

05:45 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: So there’s a bit of a context in terms of where we come from what the WTO is, the Secretariat’s role within the WTO is and to address a couple of misconceptions about the WTO and the WTO Secretariat.

05:57 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: The bulk of the presentation is going to be dedicated to what I refer to as the information and data resources ecosystem, to talk about the library, but also the databases resources and tools available at at your disposal.

06:12 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Next slide please Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: So, as I said, where do we come from, well, it helps to understand where we are now by knowing where we came from. To understand the resources that we produce in the areas of work, it helps to know the context in which the organization was born. Next slide please.

06:35 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: So the International Trade Organization, or ITO which is marked as incomplete was the third of three organizations proposed in the 1944 Bretton Woods Conference. Next.

06:50 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: The negotiations began and were strongest between 1947 to 1948 which culminated in the creation of the Havana Charter, which was the final act of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Employment, however, the Charter never came into force.

07:06 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Next slide. Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: However, simultaneous with some of the negotiations for the ITO, eight countries were underway negotiating what was called the Protocol of Provisional Application of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade, and this was done in early 1947. Next.

07:26 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: These discussions culminated in the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade or what we refer to as GATT 1947, which was signed at Havana Conference and was the main outcome of the Havana Conference.

07:37 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: However, GATT basically the this the signatory of the document created one of the only or the first multilateral and the only multilateral governing instrument for international trade.

07:51 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: And throughout the 47 years of the organization, it was always only a provisional agreement and organization. Next slide please.

08:02 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: It went through several several rounds of negotiations and after 7. 5 years of Uruguay Round negotiation between 123 countries.

08:11 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: They finally culminated in something called the Marrakesh Agreement in 1994. Next. And the Marrakesh Agreement not only updated GATT 1947, creating GATT 1994, but it brought together a number of new agreements and fundamentally established the World Trade Organization.

08:30 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Next slide. Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: This infographic, Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: the text of it is less important than understanding that this is kind of this is an explanation of the structure of the World Trade Organization.

08:45 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: In red and orange it says Ministerial Conference and that’s the governing body to which all member countries all 164 member countries are party.

08:53 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: The organization includes 164 member countries 25 countries are still negotiating their accession but it’s also fundamentally a negotiating forum for Member governments.

09:04 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: It is also a system of rules governing international commerce and, finally, the WTO is a Secretariat to support and facilitate these negotiations Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: And to facilitate the dispute settlement system. Also on this infographic you can see there are green and the green indicates the committees.

09:24 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: The green indicates committees, which are part of the organization, the light blue indicates Councils, including the General Council.

09:32 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: The TRIPs Council which is Trade Related Intellectual Property is another example of one of the councils and then the dark blue includes plurilateral groups Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: As well as other affiliated activities for the organization.

09:48 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Next slide please.

09:52 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Now, what is the WTO Secretariat? The role of the WTO Secretariat now as I said, under GATT there was no Secretariat officially created. There were people who were working to make negotiations possible but the Secretariat and the organization were never finally officially created.

10:10 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: The WTO Secretariat’s roles are to supply technical support to the councils, committees and ministerial conferences; Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: To provide technical assistance and advice to governments seeking membership; to analyze world trade; Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: And, finally, to communicate and explain WTO’s activities and by this it is the World Trade Organization, so the work of the organization, the work of the Members to the public and the media.

So it’s a very complex level of activity that we do. Next slide please.

10:46 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Which leads us to a fundamental thing to cover, which is misconceptions about what the WTO is, what the World Trade Organization is and what is the World Trade Organization Secretariat.

10:56 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Now that I have talked about what we are, there are some important misconceptions to address about what we are not.

11:02 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: The WTO is not a specialized agency of the United Nations system. So though we closely the collaborate with the system and with the specialized agencies, we are not part of the United Nations system.

11:16 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: The WTO is also not a decision making body.

11:19 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: The WTO Members come to the WTO for the purpose of making decisions, usually by consensus. So we provide the environment in which these decisions can be made and these negotiations can take place.

11:33 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: All right, can we go back a moment? Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Thank you.

11:38 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: And finally, WTO and the WTO Secretariat are not a rule enforcing body, just as the decisions are made by WTO members, the rules are enforced by WTO members.

11:51 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: And a final thing that is not on the slide is to understand that, while the WTO both the organization and the secretariat seek to engage with stakeholders outside of member countries Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: the organization exists for the negotiation of member countries so observers exist.

12:10 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Other civil society Members can serve as observers or can participate in certain things.

12:16 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: But the organization is for the Members.

12:20 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Now I am ready for the next slide please.

12:24 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Thank you, so we come to the bulk of the presentation, which is the information ecosystem for the organization and one of the Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: highlights of these for me, and I can say that is the WTO Library. So the World Trade Organization Library, the WTO Library has as its goal specialization of the collection on international trade and trade related topics, especially economic statistical legal and historical materials.

12:55 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: These three photos show the library at different stages during its history, the building was originally designed for the International Labour office and that first black and white photo shows what it looked like in the 1940s. The Center photo is the 1980s and the right photo is today.

13:12 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: So this is our reading room, so I hope someday everyone will have a chance to come visit.

13:18 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: that’s fine, you can stay! It’s perfect perfect. I’m ready for this slide. So thank you very much to Kenya for for helping me with my slides. What resources does the WTO library offer? Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: So our collection includes more than 45,000 books and monographs in print and electronic format.

13:35 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: And these include publications from other international organizations think tanks, as well as publishing houses and it includes GATT and WTO Official Publications.

13:47 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Our collection includes more than 3000 journals and serials in print and electronic format more than 7000 newspapers and news sources again print and electronic.

13:57 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: databases and other electronic resources. We provide training and we include among the resources, the staff who work in the library.

14:07 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Next please.

14:19 - Kenya Flash: You’re muted Katherine. Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Sorry, I clicked the wrong button. Beg your pardon. So who can use the library? So the library is for the primary purpose of supporting WTO Secretariat staff Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: And Member State delegations, however, other patrons groups, we also serve include training participants, these are often members of governments.

14:38 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: or students who are coming from elsewhere to study or work within the WTO. We also support academic researchers in person and remotely.

14:49 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: We support United Nations and United Nations agency staff again in Geneva, as well as abroad. We support members of non governmental organizations Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: And we support partner, libraries and institutions.

15:02 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: A last group which is not listed on here that we do provide some services to are the general public. We are one of the few libraries in an international organization in Geneva that remains open to the public.

15:14 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: So we can welcome visitors who would like to simply come and see the library and come and learn more about the Secretariat.

15:21 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Next slide please Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: The WTO Library’s website is our electronic home. It is the face that we show to the world on the Internet.

15:35 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: In the image here, you can see the header that appears on our website.

15:40 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Under WTO Library, we have our online catalogues we have one catalog, but it has two interfaces as we are presently transitioning between interfaces.

15:50 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: From our library website, we also offer a guide to e-resources and journals which we call our Journal and News subscriptions portal.

15:58 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: We offer topical resource guides and we offer the library blog. And the purpose of these is to highlight new resources received, to share a list of new acquisitions and to advertise events that will be taking place that we think will be of use to our patron group.

16:16 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: This all the content that appears on there is publicly accessible, there are a few events that we have hosted that have remained behind Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: A login screen, but by and large, what we have tried to put on there are things that are accessible to the wider world, as well as the organization, so that people outside of the organization can see the areas of work of the organization.

16:39 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Next slide. Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: And now, WTO databases resources and tools.

16:51 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: If you have previously tried to find materials on the WTO or by the WTO.

16:58 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: It is possible that you have experienced a certain degree of frustration and trying to navigate the myriad of resources produced by the organization.

17:09 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: There are now activities within the organization as with elsewhere, other organizations and other institutions I’m sure.

17:16 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: trying to find a way to better facilitate access to what we produce information at our disposal, not only for us, but for the wider world.

17:27 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: What I hope the bulk of this presentation is to give you an idea of a number of the WTO databases resources and tools available in our information ecosystem to better enable you to find what you need.

17:41 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Next slide. Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: To start with, there’s the Guide to Documentation.

17:52 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: The Guide to Documentation is useful for understanding basic information about how the Secretariat organizes its documentation and information about documents.

18:04 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Related to GATT and WTO official documents it explains, among others, the the symbols used to describe the different documents and the collections of documents.

18:18 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Next slide please.

18:23 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: GATT official documents now, while many of you might find that the WTO official documents are the more pertinent, as I said earlier, having some information about the previous documentation can be useful, not least because the GATT official documents set the foundation for where WTO began.

18:44 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: There was a decision made by the general counsel in 2006 to make public all GATT official documents.

18:52 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: However, not all are yet available in the electronic format so scanning continues Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: And that includes also some GATT Official Publications. We’re still working on the scanning project to make all of these available, however, it is possible to access all of these GATT documents. One thing to be aware of is that GATT documents were not always produced in all three languages Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: in which the organization worked.

Initially they were only prepared in English and other languages came later. So it is possible that if you are looking for a reference to a document Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: in one of the other working languages of the organization, it may not be available, because it was not created.

19:35 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Next slide. Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: And, in parallel to GATT official documents, we have what’s called documents online or DOL. And DOL is the home of the WTO official documents.

19:50 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: At present there are more than 140,000 documents in the three languages of the organization English, French and Spanish and, in contrast to GATT Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Under the WTO documents were prepared in all three languages from the beginning of the organization. So from 1995 onwards each document produced by the organization is available in all three languages.

20:14 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: DOL is updated daily.

20:17 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: as a function of how quickly new documents are added.

20:21 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: And the documents that are included in DOL are available for download in PDF and Word.

20:28 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: DOL is its own extent system and navigating it can be challenging. With that in mind, there are a number of resources to help people better maximize their searching capabilities on DOL. This includes a link to the Guide on Documentation which I mentioned earlier.

20:46 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: But it also includes search tips and help.

20:50 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: If you run into trouble what I would recommend is, if you run into trouble using any of these resources, please feel free to contact us our contact details for the library, or at the end of the presentation.

21:01 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: please feel free to contact us so that we may help you reach contact with the best person who can help you make the most of these tools.

21:09 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Even when we try to create the best possible interface there’s a certain degree of learning the system, and if we can be of help with that we would like to. Next please.

21:25 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Legal instruments.

21:27 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: So the category of documents called legal instruments includes the WTO agreements, schedules, modifications, instruments of acceptance, memorandums of understanding and more. It exists in electronic format at the link below on the WTO website.

21:44 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: and regularly, there is a print version produced called the ‘WTO Status of Legal Instruments which does not include the full document always but includes references.

21:53 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: To the legal instruments currently in place. The most recent is the one is shown here the 2019 edition, however, be advised that the content on the legal instruments site is updated currently as of March 2021 so the site is the more recent update.

22:12 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Next slide. Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Basic Instruments. You know Basic Instruments and Selected Documents or what we call BISD is one of the exceptions in terms of accessibility from the resources that I refer to in this presentation, because these exist exclusively at present in print format.

22:38 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: We do have a collection in the library so in the case where somebody cannot obtain access through interlibrary loan or through their own institution, the GATT Basic Instruments and the WTO Basic Instruments are part of our collection.

22:53 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: The GATT BISD ran through 1995 and as I’ve indicated earlier in the presentation, it was originally produced only in English with other languages being added so French and then, subsequently Spanish.

23:07 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: It also exists for sale certain places online I discovered as a 42 volume print series or even more rare a CD Rom which may or may not work with your setup. The WTO BISD, by contrast, ran from 1995 to 2006 and it was restarted in 2017 but again it’s in print format for the moment.

23:29 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: What you see at the bottom here if you’re if you are reading the spines of the books – it’s not the basic instruments. I was unable to obtain a really nice photo of that, but I wanted to show you what some of Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: the librarians in the past, at the at the WTO came up with this idea. In the case of GATT and WTO Official Publications when they’ve been rebound the practice was put in place to use a different color for each language.

23:56 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: So in this case red spine indicates that it’s the English version blue is in French and green is for Spanish.

24:07 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Next slide please.

24:14 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Dispute Settlement. Dispute settlement reports and disputes are a point of major interest for the WTO.

24:22 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: One of the easiest places from which to access all of the content available on the dispute settlement and the dispute settlement system is from the trade topic guide on the WTP website, which I will give instructions on how to access later in the presentation.

24:37 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: It is also available from link shown at the bottom of this slide.

24:41 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: It includes on this trade topic guide a database for both finding and following disputes, setting up alerts to receive notifications when new documents are added or movement takes place on the dispute.

24:54 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Please note the reports of the GATT disputes are included in GATT Official Documents.

25:00 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: There was recently a publication of GATT dispute settlement reports which came out in print and electronic format, but after 2006 even these disputes were made publicly available, and so they are in the GATT official documents now.

25:15 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Next slide please.

25:19 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: The WTO Analytical Index.

25:22 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: The WTO Analytical Index gives an article by article guide to the interpretation and application of WTO agreements by WTO bodies.

25:33 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Within it, it includes also the reports of WTO Appellate Body, panels, arbitrators as well as related decisions. It previously existed in print very large Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: volumes and electronic format on CD Rom but now it is exclusively electronic and it is regularly updated. We are currently on the fifth edition.

26:00 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: The GATT Analytical Index also exists and is available in print with some form of forms site with some parts of it available in electronic format from the WTO’s library catalog because we have scan them and we have found them in order to make them accessible.

26:18 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Next slide please.

26:21 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Finally, the WTO’s website. Now, as I indicated the WTO’s website includes a large amount of information on a large number of topics.

26:33 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: There it includes things like news, the events calendar, both for Members, which is under password for Members.

26:41 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: which include some of the meetings to which they participate, but also a section on about the WTO, photo gallery and much more.

26:50 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: The number of pages for this website is significant, and I would like to focus on three areas or three portions of the website, which I think may be most pertinent to understanding and finding what you need, and these are the trade topics subject guides.

27:06 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: The list of databases and the data portal.

27:11 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Next slide please.

27:16 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: So trade topics.

27:18 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: We have subjects thematic dossiers with news items, publications, databases and more.

27:26 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: On this page, you can see a list of the topics they include things like a COVID-19 portal page, for the work of WTO on COVID.

27:35 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Disputes, other trade topics, technical barriers to trade, intellectual property, agriculture areas under current and past negotiation are available here.

27:46 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: By clicking on one of the links it will take you to a page that provides a comprehensive list of the items such as news, recent publications, databases and more.

27:57 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: It is a very useful portal, through which you can access, a great deal of information.

28:04 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: If you already know, the topics that you’re seeking.

28:07 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: It also includes newly launched webinar links. We’ve been doing more webinars on WTO, as well as certain podcasts. It provides links to that content as well.

28:19 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Next slide. Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: The WTO website list of databases.

28:29 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: I didn’t include a screenshot of this because it is exactly what it says on the box, it is a list of databases.

28:36 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: It is up to date regularly updated and searchable of the WTO online systems. So it includes the web sites such as the WTO website and databases such as DOL, or the dispute settlement database.

28:52 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: For each database or system, it includes information about the systems content, as well as the contact person or the contact email.

29:04 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: And details regarding accessibility, so in the case of DOL it indicates, which documents you can expect to have access to and which documents may be restricted.

29:16 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: However, Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: As other organizations are experiencing, we are struggling with the best way to make these systems and databases interoperable.

29:28 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: It is something we are working on. We are aware that it poses a challenge for both transparency and also best functioning of the systems that we provide.

29:38 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: So we hope that this list of databases will evolve, to the point where a similar language is used across the board to facilitate access both by us to our own information and also by those outside.

29:52 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Next slide please.

29:57 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: The last of the three that I wanted to talk about on the WTO website is the Data Portal.

30:02 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: This is regularly updated with statistical indicators relating to the WTO’s issues and the topics on which we are working.

30:10 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: They include time series covering merchandise trade as well as trade and services statistics, market access indicators, non tariff information and more.

30:20 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Their data retrieval functionalities such as data select, display, and export. Please note that maps, as well as graphical representations of data, such as infographics are held separately on the statistics trade topic page, which is under the trade topics page, to which I referred previously.

30:39 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Next slide please.

30:45 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Finally. Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: One of the things that I wish to convey and perhaps what I hope will be the biggest takeaway.

30:52 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Is if you are faced with trying to find information or publication for materials and despite best efforts have been ported please contact the library. We will be more than happy to do our best to help you find what you need.

31:08 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: And I’ve included phone, even though please bear in mind, we are in Geneva, Switzerland, rather than the states so our working hours may not be yours.

31:17 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: I would recommend using the library at wto. org email, all of this information is available from our website so there’s no need to memorize it or write it down right now.

31:28 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: But please let us know if you have any questions and again if you have questions about this presentation in particular.

31:34 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Please send them to the library@wto and make reference to the presentation so that I know to what to what you are referring. Because this is the joint email for our team, so that all the experts in our team can respond to your queries.

31:48 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Next slide please Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: This concludes my presentation, thank you very much again for this opportunity, thank you very much to the attendees who have participated, I look forward to your questions, thank you.

32:08 - Lynda Kellam: Thank you very much, we might want to keep the slides up in case Katherine needs to go back to any. We do have a few questions. There is one in the chat, Lynda Kellam: and feel free to be you know put some questions in the Q and A so we can keep track of it, but if you put them in chat that’s fine too. So there’s a question in the chat from Steve.

32:28 - Lynda Kellam: Is the source of the trade data COMTRADE? Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: I smile because it’s a very good question.

32:37 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: And unfortunately, as of the presentation today, I do not have the answer to that question.

32:43 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Because I tried, the approach that to be taken from the outside of writing to the generic statistics email to find out the answer.

32:50 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: And I have not received a response, yet. In talking to my colleagues, my understanding is we pull statistics or receive statistics from a number of sources.

32:58 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: COMTRADE is one of them, we also look at balance of payments statistics from organizations such as IMF. We receive national statistics.

33:07 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: What I don’t know is to what degree, this is integrated into the Data Portal. I don’t know for sure, the answer to your question, unfortunately. I will hopefully have an answer soon, so that I can respond to that question more fully.

33:23 - Lynda Kellam: And this is another one that’s related to that.

33:29 - Lynda Kellam: Can Katherine explain anything in the WTO merchandise trade statistic portal, not in COMTRADE? Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: No, I can’t but I will see what I can do.

33:42 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: I will try to note down.

33:45 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: who made the query and to what it refers, and I will see, I will see what I can find that will be that’s James.

33:51 - Lynda Kellam: I will see ya. Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: I will see what I can find out.

33:55 - Lynda Kellam: That’s James Church, so if you need his email I can give it to you.

33:58 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Thank you very much, yes, because my pen just died.

34:04 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Just a moment yeah because I don’t I don’t have the the answer to that question.

34:09 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: But I would be curious to know.

34:12 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Okay cool, thank you very much.

34:14 - Lynda Kellam: And then there’s a couple questions about BISD. So Anne Zald asked: is the overlap, is there overlap between the legal instruments which is in print and the BISD? Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Yes, there is some overlap.

34:28 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Sometimes you’ll find documents that appear in the BISD that do not appear in the Legal Instruments, especially relating to GATT because Legal Instruments is something that’s for mostly for WTO.

34:41 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: The BSID also had a different numbering system than the Legal Instruments, but there is overlap, because, for example, the 42 volumes incorporate some of the items that are in the Legal Instruments So yes, there is there is overlap.

34:54 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: But the numbers should be higher if they’re not the same, they should have an indication of which one which one is which so.

35:05 - Lynda Kellam: And then the next one, is for the BISD, why did it get discontinued? Is there a source covering the years that aren’t covered? Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: I am going to note that down too.

35:17 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: I know that Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: The BISD was viewed originally as a way to communicate official documents to Members.

35:26 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: And so they were bound in small volumes and distributed in that way, so I think the purpose changed, however.

35:34 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Why, there was an interruption during WTO I’m not sure. I expect that it was because the Legal Instruments took precedence Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: and there was another way to manage these communications, but I will check and see what I can find out from my coleagues maybe, my colleagues in archives might have might have some information about that break.

35:52 - Lynda Kellam: And I’ll take these chat these questions down too and email them to you, and then we can email them out to everybody who registered.

35:59 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: That would be great. That would be great. That way, everyone can benefit from from having the answers, because these are these are fabulous questions, thank you very much.

36:08 - Lynda Kellam: Any more questions? Lynda Kellam: Give a pause.

36:15 - Lynda Kellam: see if there are more questions.

36:26 - Lynda Kellam: Well, if you are writing questions, I just want to say thank you very much, Katherine for for presenting and talking about this this very helpful definitely.

36:35 - Lynda Kellam: Both for the review and just get getting into those major major documents really helpful.

36:42 - Lynda Kellam: So Nadine was asking about a link to the PowerPoint slides. Do you want to provide those to me, and I can.

36:49 - We. Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: I can provide those to you and I can give you the PowerPoint.

36:53 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: And I can also produce them as PDF because I know that sometimes.

36:56 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: people find it easier to access it in one format or the other.

36:59 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: and provide that absolutely.

37:02 - Lynda Kellam: yeah and we’re going to um. Lynda Kellam: yeah, so I will do, I will everyone else.

37:12 - Lynda Kellam: Put the recording in YouTube and then usually have the slides as a Google document so people can get a link to it through with YouTube recordings that’s how we usually do it.

37:26 - Lynda Kellam: So, Katherine will send it to me and then I’ll link it inside the recording and send that out to everybody who registered.

37:34 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: And I don’t know if I need to send it. I know Kenya has a copy of the slides obviously as well.

37:39 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: To make sure that PIPPRS participants will have that as well, I don’t know how accessible.

37:44 - Lynda Kellam: How accessible yeah Okay, we can send it out oh yeah everybody can access it but yeah well okay.

37:50 - Lynda Kellam: Great everybody who registered know so they’ll be present.

37:55 - Lynda Kellam: So any last questions before we say thank you to Katherine? Lynda Kellam: Thank you everyone who.

38:06 - Lynda Kellam: Asked questions. Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Yes, thank you for the questions I appreciate that.

38:19 - Lynda Kellam: So we’re getting a lot of Thank yous.

38:21 - Lynda Kellam: Well, thank you, everybody for coming, thank you, Katherine so much for Lynda Kellam: joining us today and arranging this is really great, and thank you to Kenya, for helping to arrange it.

38:32 - Lynda Kellam: And I will I promise to have it up, within the next couple of weeks, I am taking a day off.

38:39 - Lynda Kellam: So we’ll try to do as soon as possible and and Sam, Samantha has to do closed captioning so.

38:47 - Lynda Kellam: So it takes a little bit of time, sometimes, but we will get it up as soon as possible and I will let Katherine know about the questions that were outstanding and Lynda Kellam: send those out to the entire group everybody registered once we have the answers. Thank you, everybody for coming and if unless there’s any last questions um.

39:06 - Lynda Kellam: Well then, there. Kenya Flash: Is one more question.

39:11 - Lynda Kellam: is why I ramble a lot. Lynda Kellam: Before at least um.

39:15 - Lynda Kellam: So I had a question on the current policies for restriction of documents are they still covered in the 1996 Lynda Kellam: documents? Should I email direct? Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: So it depends, which 1996 document we’re considering.

39:28 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: The current policies for restriction is that there are rules about, at which point a document becomes an official document, for example, there the.

39:36 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: documents are only available to Members Aha that one Okay, yes I reckon I recognize that string. I can’t tell you, if it relates directly to that, but I will look, and I can tell you more about the restriction.

39:50 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: That sort of information I should be able to share with share with everybody, so you know a little bit more about what’s restricted and what isn’t.

39:56 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: By and large, there is a push for more more availability. Is it secret? We will find out when I try to download the document and ask whether I can share it.

40:10 - Lynda Kellam: Get that. Lynda Kellam: I’ll get that information to you.

40:14 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: Thank you, that I can check that.

40:17 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: that’s. All right.

40:20 - Kenya Flash: Thank you. Kenya Flash: Thank you very much, Katherine, it has been fantastic just learning about the WTO and the changes it’s gone through, and again I love your library.

40:36 - Kenya Flash: For anyone who’s still here Katherine’s background is the actual library.

40:43 - Lynda Kellam: yeah it’s beautiful. Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: it’s gorgeous This is our This is our main reading room.

40:49 - Katherine Rewinkel El-Darwish: And it has its own its own special history, but I wanted to make sure to be able to give the presentation from here, rather than just showing the backdrop because it’s it’s a lovely space and, as I said, I hope that sometime in the future, everyone has the opportunity to be able to visit.

41:09 - Lynda Kellam: hello, thank you, thank you so much, again, and thank you to PIPPRS for the help, working with us and doing this jointly. PPIRS has a webinar coming up May.

41:23 - Lynda Kellam: soon. Lynda Kellam: incident this information may.

41:30 - Catch this. Lynda Kellam: May 19 is their webinars so definitely and I put a link to that so definitely register for that that looks really good overview of treaties.

41:44 - Lynda Kellam: It looks really interesting. Oh Nadine is leading that that’s awesome. So yeah it’s definitely take check it out check out our GODORT stuff.

41:52 - Lynda Kellam: We have a lot of things coming up and.

41:55 - Lynda Kellam: that’s about it, so I will be in touch with everybody who registered and let you know and I’ll be in touch with Katherine, the question with the questions that were outstanding.

42:07 - Lynda Kellam: Okay well Thank you everyone have a great day hope it’s not snowing where you are.

42:16 - Kenya Flash: Except I imagine it’s snowing for Nadine Lynda Kellam: yeah. .