Knowledge-Sharing Seminar on Fisheries Subsidies

Organised by
18 September 2017
Geneva, Switzerland

Reaching agreement on new rules to govern fisheries subsidies is one of the clearest ways the World Trade Organization (WTO) can contribute directly to progress under the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. The proposals tabled before August 2017 reflect a wide variety of positions and interests from among a diverse range of members. They reveal areas of potential common ground, such as the objective of disciplining subsidies related to illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing. The proposals also, however, identify a range of quite distinct approaches to achieve this and other objectives.  This seminar aimed to deepen understanding across the WTO Membership of the issues in play in the fisheries subsidies negotiations, and thus to support all WTO Members to play an active role in achieving a meaningful outcome at the organisation's Ministerial Conference in December 2017. 


10:00 - 10:10
Opening Remarks

This session will focus on the practical and legal implications of different possible approaches to identifying illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing activity and how identification could work in the context of a WTO subsidy prohibition.  It will include presentation of a reference paper by Carl-Christian Schmidt on subsidies and IUU fishing, published by ICTSD in July 2017. 


Carl-Christian SCHMIDT, Chair, Nordic Marine Think Tank


Sarah LENEL, Fishery Monitoring and Compliance Manager, CCAMLR 


Pio MANOA, Legal Officer, FAO


Joost PAUWELYN, Professor of International Law, Graduate Institute



11:30 - 11:50
Coffee break

This session will include a presentation by FAO experts of global data on overfished stocks. Discussion will also explore the legal implications of different approaches to a possible discipline in proposals on the table in the WTO negotiations. 


Marcio CASTRO DE SOUZA, Senior Fishery Industry Officer, FAO


Maren HEADLEY, Researcher, Caribbean Regional Fisheries Mechanism


Gary HORLICK, Partner, Law Offices of Gary N. Horlick


13:00 - 14:00
Lunch Break

Discussion in this session will include presentation of analysis by the FAO on the concepts of overfishing and overcapacity, and presentation of new work by the OECD on the impact of different subsidies on fishing capacity, fishing effort, and fishers' incomes and possible implications for subsidy disciplines. 



Marcio CASTRO DE SOUZA, Senior Fishery Industry Officer, FAO


Roger MARTINI, Senior Fisheries Policy Analyst, OECD 


Remi PARMENTIER, Director, Varda Group 


15:10 - 15:30
Coffee Break

This session will examine how special and differential treatment for developing country WTO Members could be designed within an agreement on fisheries subsidies, including new analysis by U. Rashid Sumaila of how small-scale fishing could be differentiated in the context of an agreement.  


U. Rashid SUMAILA, Professor, University of British Columbia


David VIVAS EUGUI, Legal Officer, UNCTAD


Mukesh BHATNAGAR, Professor, Centre for WTO Studies


Closing remarks

Deborah VORHIES is ICTSD’s Managing Director. She holds an MBA and earlier degrees in law and finance. Prior to joining ICTSD, Mrs. Vorhies spent six years with the International Finance Corporation (IFC and World Bank Group), developing and managing its Biodiversity portfolio.She also worked as Coordinator of the Trade and Environment Programme of the United Nations Environment Programme, folllowing various positions and lecturing in International Economic Development, Finance and Law. Mrs.Vorhies is a citizen of France and South Africa.

Chair, Nordic Marine Think Tank. Former Head of the Fisheries Policies Division at the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). MA in Economics, Copenhagen School of Economics and Business Administration and Post-graduate studies at the College of Europe, Belgium. Has dealt with a wide range of international fisheries questions in particular related to trade, fisheries management, subsidies, IUU fisheries, certification and accreditation of fisheries, green growth and sustainable resource use. Helped set up the Marine Stewardship Council.

Sarah manages the Fishery Monitoring and Compliance Section for the Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources (CCAMLR).  FMC provides expert professional, technical, logistical and administrative support to the Commission utilising best-practice fishery monitoring and compliance initiatives consistent with the priorities and decisions of the Commission.

Sarah has recently been engaged by the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO) as a consultant for the project on sustainable fisheries management and biodiversity conservation of deep-sea living marine resources and ecosystems in the areas beyond national jurisdiction (ABNJ Deep Seas Project). 

Prior to joining CCAMLR in 2011, Sarah was a Senior Fisheries Officer (Intelligence and Project Management) with the Tasmanian Department of Primary Industries, Parks, Water and Environment (DPIPWE). During her time with DPIPWE Sarah was a permanent adviser to Tasmania Police, a range of Ministerial Advisory Committees for fisheries and a member of the National Fisheries Compliance Committee (NFCC). Her experiences include secondments to Tasmania’s peak industry representational body, the Tasmanian Seafood Industry Council (TSIC) and the Australian Crime Commission (ACC). 

Sarah hold a Bachelor of Science and a Master of Business Administration (Marine Environment and Management) from the University of Tasmania and has undertaken professional development with the Australian Federal Police (AFP) and the Australian National Centre for Ocean Resources & Security (ANCORS).


Dr Pio Manoa is a legal officer with the Legal Office of the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization based in Rome and is specialised in public international law, the Law of the Sea and fisheries law. He has previously undertaken assignments as a consultant, lectured in ocean law and policy at the University of the South Pacific, and has also been a legal adviser to member countries of the Pacific Islands Forum Fisheries Agency. His areas of research includes the contributions of regional fisheries management organisations to international law.

Joost Pauwelyn is Professor of International Law at the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies in Geneva and Co-Director of the Institute’s Centre for Trade and Economic Integration.  He is also the Murase Visiting Professor of Law at Georgetown Law Center in Washington DC and leads the network of legal clinics on international economic law.

Before joining the Graduate Institute, Joost was a tenured professor at Duke Law School.  He served as legal officer at the WTO from 1996 to 2002 and practiced law at a major Brussels law firm. 

Joost advises governments and non-state actors in dispute settlement under the WTO and FTAs and investor-state arbitration.  From 2007 to 2014 he was Senior Advisor with the law firm of King & Spalding LLP. 

Joost received degrees from the Universities of Namur and Leuven, Belgium as well as Oxford University and holds a doctorate from the University of Neuchâtel. He was appointed on the roster of WTO panelists and as arbitrator under Free Trade Agreements and the Energy Charter Treaty. He is a Member of the ICSID Panel of Conciliators. Joost is the author of one of the leading case books on International Trade Law (Aspen, 2016, 3nd ed., with A. Guzman & J. Hillman). In 2015, he was appointed as Co-Editor in Chief of the Journal of International Economic Law.

Dr. Maren Headley has been a researcher with the Caribbean Regional Fisheries Mechanism Secretariat since 2006. She works in the CRFM Research and Resource Assessment Programme and has been involved in the CRFM Working Groups on Pelagic Fisheries; Reef and Slope Fisheries; and Continental Shelf Fisheries. The underlying objective of each Working Group is to promote the sustainable utilization of fisheries resources and their associated ecosystems through assessment and formulation of suitable management strategies, consistent with the ecosystem, precautionary and participatory approaches to fisheries management. Dr. Headley received her doctorate in Fisheries and Aquaculture Bio-economics from the Marist University of Merida, Yucatan, Mexico. She is a current member of the North American Association of Fisheries Economists (NAAFE), and the Community Conservation Research Network (CCRN) which is based at the Saint Mary’s University, Halifax, Canada.

Alice Tipping is a Programme Manager and leads the ICTSD’s Environment and Natural Resources programme.

Prior to joining the ICTSD, she worked as a diplomat and legal adviser in the New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade. She has served in New Zealand’s Mission to the World Trade Organisation in Geneva, where she covered negotiations on trade remedies, including fisheries subsidies, trade and the environment and the WTO’s dispute settlement system.

She has also served in New Zealand’s Mission to the United Nations in Geneva, covering several UN specialised agencies and environmental issues.

Ms Tipping has also worked as a research and strategy analyst in foreign direct investment promotion.

She holds an MPhil in International Relations from Cambridge University. She also holds a Bachelor of Laws degree and a Bachelor of Commerce degree, with a major in Economics, from Victoria University of Wellington. Alice is citizen of the United Kingdom and New Zealand.

Gary Horlick is an international trade attorney based in Washington, D.C.  He is listed by Euromoney/Institutional Investor and Who’s Who Legal as one of the world’s highest-ranked international trade lawyers, and is ranked in the top tier by Chambers.

Horlick is former international trade counsel with the U.S. Senate Finance Committee, and also served at head of Import Administration at the Department of Commerce, where he was responsible for all U.S. anti-dumping and countervailing duty cases, Foreign Trade Zones, Special Import Progress, and the negotiation of the U.S.-EU steel agreement.

Also, Horlick has served as chairman of WTO and Mercosur panels, and has litigated cases in U.S. courts, GATT and WTO tribunals, NAFTA tribunals, and anti-dumping/countervailing duty/safeguard cases in more than 20 countries.

During his career, Horlick has represented U.S. and international businesses, as well as trade associations and governments.  Horlick teaches international trade law at Yale, Georgetown and Barcelona universities.  He is a graduate of Dartmouth College, Cambridge University, and Yale Law School.

Christophe BELLMANN is a Senior Resident Research Associate at ICTSD with more than 20 years of experience working on international trade negotiations and policy making from a sustainable development perspective. Mr. Bellmann joined ICTSD in 1998, first as Programme Officer for Outreach and Partnership, then as Director of Policy Dialogues and since 2002, as Programmes Director. Before joining our Organisation, Mr. Bellmann worked for the Swiss Coalition of Development Organisations (SCDO) where he was responsible for activities on multilateral trade and sustainable development issues. Mr. Bellmann has also worked as a Research Associate at the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) in Santiago, Chile, on the relationship between trade and the environment.

Mr. Bellmann has edited and published a wide range of books, articles and opinion pieces in English, French and Spanish on trade and sustainable development. His work focuses on international trade negotiations, development policies and environmental governance in areas such as agriculture and food security, fisheries, tariffs and non-tariff barriers, rules, regional trade, services and intellectual property rights, He holds an MA in International Relations from the Graduate Institute for International Studies in Geneva. Mr. Bellmann is a citizen of Switzerland.



Mr. Ahmad Mukhtar is Economist (Trade and Food Security) with the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations, at Liaison Office Geneva. He has around 20 years of experience in public, private and international development sectors, working on national and international/multilateral assignments in the areas of international economic and trade policy, commercial diplomacy, bilateral and regional trade issues and implementation of trade and investment policies. Previously, he has worked with the UNCTAD, UNDP, Permanent Mission of Pakistan to the WTO, Ministry of Commerce Pakistan and the Board of Investment Pakistan. . He has also led the multilateral WTO-DDA negotiations on Domestic Regulations for Trade in Services as Chairman of the WTO Working Party on Domestic Regulations (2010-2011). He has also worked for different international development partners including the USAID, EU, DFID and ADB in different parts of the world. In terms of educational attainments, he has a very rich and unique combination of educational and professional qualifications in Economics (M.A and PGD, PhD in progress), Law (LL.M and LL.B), Public Policy (MPP), Accounting/Finance (ACMA, PFA), and Biotechnology (PGD). He has completed various professional trainings and courses and also delivered many such courses, workshops and lectures globally. 

Roger Martini has been an economist with the OECD since 2002. In that time he has worked on collecting and analysing policy data in both agriculture and fisheries. He was one of the authors of the OECD Policy Evaluation Model (PEM), designed to investigate the effects of policy support on production, trade and welfare in a number of OECD countries. Roger is currently leading a project to revise the fisheries support database in the OECD to better support analysis on the impacts of fisheries policies.

Rémi is a veteran of the international environmental movement which he joined at a young age in 1974 when he began working with Friends of the Earth in France. Since that time he has been both an actor and a witness of the evolution of environmental advocacy and policy.

Early on, Rémi was a founding member of Greenpeace International, a crew member and campaign leader during the first legendary voyages of the Rainbow Warrior in the 1970s and early 80s (read Rémi’s three parts series on the first voyage of the Rainbow Warrior: Part I, Part II, and Part III). He established in the 70s and 80s the Greenpeace offices in France, Spain and Latin America, and played a leading role in many of Greenpeace’s campaigns, and in setting up Greenpeace International’s Strategic and Political Unit which he led as Greenpeace International’s Political Director, until he left that position at the end of 2002 to form the Varda Group with Kelly Rigg.

Over his four decades as an environmental advocate, Rémi has worked with leaders, government ministers, scientists, activists, and policy experts, developing a deep knowledge in the areas of sustainable development, environmental policy, public health, marine policy, toxic pollution prevention, nuclear proliferation, among others. Rémi was the main architect of the worldwide prohibition on the dumping at sea of nuclear and industrial wastes, a landmark campaign he ran over fifteen years.

With the Varda Group, Rémi develops projects and campaigns on behalf of a variety of clients and partners, covering areas as diverse as ocean governance and marine policy, climate action, tobacco control, bees and pollinators conservation, whale conservation, anti-corruption, human dignity, etc. He has also served on the delegations of several governments and organizations at numerous international policy fora, within and outside the United Nations system. In 2005, he proposed to the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) to organize the first World Assembly on Labour and the Environment held in Nairobi in January 2006, and which gave rise to the creation of UNEP’s Green Jobs initiative.

Rémi was one of the initial thinkers who helped conceptualize and establish the Global Ocean Commission and, as its Deputy Executive Secretary has advised the Commissioners, coordinated the policy development and evolution of their roadmap to ocean recovery and helped to deliver on its outcomes.

Always eager to share his knowledge and experience, Rémi is regularly invited to be speaker at conferences and other events. He is a Visiting Professor at Madrid’s international business school Instituto de Empresa and, also in Madrid at the Institute of Industrial Management where he teaches Leadership in Environmental Advocacy.

Dr. Ussif Rashid Sumaila is Professor with a joint appointment at the Institute for the Oceans and Fisheries and the Liu Institute for Global Issues, and Director of the Fisheries Economics Research Unit (FERU) and OceanCanada at the University of British Columbia. He specializes in bioeconomics, marine ecosystem valuation and the analysis of global issues such as fisheries subsidies, IUU (illegal, unreported and unregulated) fishing, and the economics of high and deep seas fisheries.

Dr. Sumaila has experience working in fisheries and natural resource projects in Canada and the North Atlantic region, Norway, Namibia and the Southern African region, Ghana and the West African region, and Hong Kong and the South China Sea. He has authored over 180 journal articles, including in the Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Journal of Bioeconomics, International Journal of Science and Nature, Land Economics, ICES Journal of Marine Science, Environmental and Resource Economics and Ecological Economics. Dr. Sumaila is the winner of the American Fisheries Society Award for Excellence in Public Outreach, the Stanford Leopold Leadership Fellowship, the Pew Marine Fellowship, and the Peter Benchley Ocean Award for Excellence in Science. He has given talks at the UN Rio+20, the WTO, the White House, the Canadian Parliament and the British House of Lords. His research has generated a great deal of public interest, and has been cited by, among others, The Economist, The Boston Globe, International Herald Tribune, The Globe and Mail, The Wall Street Journal and Vancouver Sun.


Mr. Mukesh Bhatnagar is currently working as Professor in the Centre for WTO Studies, Indian Institute of Foreign Trade (IIFT), New Delhi. His area of specialization is WTO Trade Remedy Measures, Rules negotiations including Fisheries subsidies negotiations and Dispute Settlement. He has an overall experience of about 30 years in handling international trade issues including Doha round negotiations, trade remedies, WTO disputes and various policy instruments of government for promotion of exports.

Prior to joining the Centre for WTO Studies he worked in the Trade Policy Division of Department of Commerce from 2007 to 2012 when he handled Rules Negotiations in the Doha round and several important disputes in WTO where India was either a complainant or a respondent. He took part in the negotiations of the Negotiating Group on Rules in the area of Anti-dumping and Subsidies including Fisheries Subsidies during 2007 to 2011. He worked closely on some of the proposals submitted by India in Fisheries subsidies negotiations. Prior to that he has worked for 5 years in the Directorate General of Anti-dumping and Allied Duties (DGAD), which is India’s investigating authority for anti-dumping and countervailing duty investigations. He has also handled negotiations of bilateral FTAs in the area of Trade Remedies and Dispute Settlement. He had joined the Government of India’s, Indian Trade Service in 1984 and has served in different capacities, the last being as Additional Director General of Foreign Trade in the Department of Commerce, Government of India up to July 2013. He holds an MBA degree from the University of Hull, UK and did his graduation in B.Com (Hons.) from Delhi University.




Mr. Vivas is Legal Officer, at the Trade, Environment, Climate Change and Sustainable Development Branch, DITC at UNCTAD. He was also Senior Economic Affairs Officer, Trade Negotiations and Commercial Diplomacy Branch at the same organization; Deputy Programmes Director at ICTSD; Senior Attorney at CIEL; Attaché for Legal Affairs at the Mission of Venezuela to the WTO and Staff Attorney at the Venezuelan Institute of Foreign Trade. 


Mr. Vivas is an international expert with more than 20 years of experience on legal and economic issues. He posses strong managerial, leadership and negotiations skills and more than 10 years of experience in strategic planning, programmatic design, implementation, team building, fundraising and setting of impact assessment systems. He has lectured on intellectual property, trade, oceans economy and environmental law at the University of Strasbourg (CEIPI), Universidad de Buenos Aires (Argentina), Universidad Javeriana (Colombia), Maastricht University (the Netherlands), WIPO Distant Learning Academy, and University of Business and International Studies (Switzerland)


He has worked as an advisor and consultant for various institutions, international and national organizations such as WTO, WHO, UNCTAD, WIPO, IDLO, European Patent Office, GIZ, South Centre, ACP Group of Countries, ACP MTS, Enabling Environments, CUTS International, Saana Consulting, QUNO, Rockefeller Foundation, AITIC, Andean Finance Corporation, ALIFAR, ASINFAR, Ministry of Science and Technology of Venezuela, Universidad de los Andes in Colombia, PHBL consulting, and Tacoma S.A.


Room D

World Trade Organisation (WTO)

Rue de Lausanne 154, 1202 Genève


Registration is mandatory. Please register online by COB on Monday 11 September 2017.