As Geneva is preparing for thousands of guests from around the world who will take part this week in the WTO Public Forum, techUK has reiterated its support for the negotiations under the WTO E-commerce initiative. Together with 26 other organisations from around the world, we have worked on and published a position paper that outlines a key set of priorities for the success of digital trade.
Digital trade is critical to the prosperity of all economies and the ability of companies of all sizes and in all sectors to produce, move, market, and sell products and services around the world. techUK supports an e-commerce agreement that will create the right framework for economic growth, innovation and entrepreneurship.
In particular, we would like to see a WTO E-Commerce agreement that:
1. Prohibits internet tariffs and customs formalities on electronic transmissions
2. Facilitates the flow of data across borders
3. Prohibits requirements to localize the storage and processing of data
4. Ensures the protection of personal data
5. Prohibits requirements to disclose source code, algorithms, or encryption keys
6. Promotes government cooperation and regulatory best practices for cybersecurity
7. Promotes state-of-the-art good regulatory practices in the regulation of digital services
8. Pursues “TFA-plus” provisions that facilitate e-commerce, including through increasing de minimis levels and simplifying customs clearance for low-value shipments
9. Promotes acceptance of electronic contracts, signatures and authentication
10. Ensures the adoption of non-IP intermediary liability protections
11. Expands market access for services
12. Expands market access for ICT goods through accession to the WTO Information Technology Agreement
13. Facilitates access to and use of government data.
All these principles are detailed in our position paper which you can find below.
techUK will also take part in the WTO Public Forum in Geneva this week. We look forward to engaging in substantive and constructive conversations on the future of global digital trade policy!