Informal meeting of EU Trade Ministers and designated Commissioner for Trade, Vice-President Mr Valdis Dombrovskis.

International Trade Negotiations
22 September 2020


The discussions orbited around crucial trade policy issues such as the reform of the World Trade Organisation, including on the EU candidate for the trade top job at the Directorate-General of the WTO, and on the review of the EU Trade Policy.


Following the summit, Cerame-Unie welcomes the agreement on the necessity to strengthen the reopening of international trade negotiations at WTO level, to increase efforts in ensuring an international level playing field for EU exporters while maintaining the Union high-level regulatory standards, and to bring necessary adjustments to the international dispute settlement system.


As for the European Trade Policy Review, Cerame-Unie strongly supports the consensus reached between EU Ministers and the Commission, on the centrality of trade policy for the COVID-19 recovery, especially with regards to the hardly-hit SMEs, and on its potential, if well-designed, to effectively protect European companies from unfair trade practices and competition. Both elements are vital for the EU ceramic industry, a sector that marks a positive trade balance amounting to 4 billion euros while facing strong competition from key global players (e.g. China, India).


Conclusively, Cerame-Unie welcomes the intentions to increase cohesion between trade, competition, and EU’s industrial policies, all in all greatly impacting the European ceramic sector.