Inter-Parliamentary UnionIPU Logo-top
    Press ReleaseIPU Logo-middle
No.150, Geneva, 13 February 2003 IPU Logo-bottom


The Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) and the European Parliament (EP) are jointly organising a Conference on the World Trade Organization (WTO), on 17 and 18 February 2003, at the Centre international de conferences de Genève (CICG), in the presence of the President of the European Parliament, Mr. Pat Cox, and the President of the IPU Council, Mr. Sergio Páez.

Mr. Cox and Mr. Páez, will meet the press on Tuesday 18 February from 12.45 to 1.15 p.m. in the press room of the CICG. The press conference will be run by the IPU Secretary General, Mr. Anders B. Johnsson.

This will be followed by the opportunity for the press to meet the members of the EP and the representatives of the IPU members.

The Conference is a joint undertaking of the Inter-Parliamentary Union and the European Parliament. It aims to strengthen democracy at the international level by bringing a parliamentary dimension to multilateral cooperation on trade issues. It was initiated by parliamentarians participating in the Fourth Ministerial Conference of the World Trade Organization in Doha in November 2001, where they adopted a Declaration calling for the transparency of the WTO to be enhanced through closer association of parliaments with its activities.

The Conference will be organised primarily for parliamentarians who specialise in international trade issues in their respective parliaments. It will provide them with an opportunity to examine the main issues arising from the Doha Ministerial Conference. The Conference will also offer opportunities to exchange views and experiences with colleagues in other parliaments, interact with government representatives directly involved in the process of multilateral trade negotiations, and engage in a dialogue with representatives of leading international agencies carrying out programmes of technical assistance and capacity-building in the field of international trade.

Established in 1889 and with its Headquarters in Geneva, the IPU, the oldest multilateral organisation, currently has 144 affiliated national parliaments and five regional assemblies as associate members. The organisation of the world's parliaments also has a Liaison Office with the United Nations in New York.
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Contacts for additional information or interviews:
Mrs. Luisa Ballin, IPU Information Officer
5, ch. du Pommier, CH - 1218 Le Grand-Saconnex / Geneva
Tel. +4122 919 41 16/27
Fax: +4122 919 41 60, 919 41 97
E-mail: or

Mrs Hélène Lanvert, Press officer of the European Parliament’s President
Tel. +322 284 22 39, GSM +32 475 45 18 11

Mr. Klaus Hullmann, European Parliament Press Office
GSM +32 475 45 18 11