WTO National Workshop on “The General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS)”

Date : 26-28 February, 2013

Venue : Bangladesh Foreign Trade Institute Conference Hall, TCB Bhaban (5th Floor), 1 Karwan bazar, Dhaka, Bangladesh.

Jointly organized by Ministry of Commerce, Government of Bangladesh and WTO.


Dale Honeck and Lizzie Merdano from WTO.


The workshop brought together government officials, policymakers or trade policy practitioners and researchers. Participating organizations included:
•    Ministry of Commerce
•    Bangladesh Foreign Trade Institute
•    Ministry of Post and Telecommunication
•    Ministry of Health & Family Welfare
•    Bangladesh Parjatan Corporation
•    Ministry of Finance
•    Office of the CCI&E
•    Bangladesh Bank
•    Ministry of Labour & Manpower
•    Bangladesh Association of International Recruiting Agencies (BAIRA)
•    Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce & Industry, Dhaka (MCCI)
•    Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FBCCI)
•    Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (BTRC)
•    Ministry of Industry
•    Board of Investment
•    Bureau of Manpower, Employment and Training
•    Ministry of Shipping
•    Ministry of Education
•    Ministry of Expatriate Welfare & Overseas Employment
•    Ministry of Information and Communication Technology
•    Bangladesh Tariff Commission
•    Directorate of Nursing Services


To familiarize the participants with the WTO and GATS.


The workshop was inaugurated with remarks from Amitav Chakraborty (DG, WTO Cell, MoC), Dale Honek(WTO) and Dr. Md. Mozibur Rahman  (CEO,BFTI). It was intended to provide the participants an in-depth understanding about various issues related to trade in services in line with the respective WTO Agreement and other issues relevant to Bangladesh as an LDC. Major issues discussed in the workshop included the WTO Agreement on GATS, LDC trade in services and an overview of Bangladesh’s schedule of commitments, Aid for Trade, Enhanced Integrated Framework, Schedule of specific commitments, GATS and Mode-4, increased market access for LDCs and Services waiver. Development implications of on-going negotiations of the Services Agreement also featured in the discussions.  The workshop also included an interactive session on the implementation of the LDC services waiver, moderated by WTO resource person Dale Honek.