Roderick Abbott

Roderick Abbott is an Associate at public affairs firm GPlus. Roderick joined GPlus after a 30 year career in the European Commission, followed by three years as Deputy Director General at the World Trade Organisation in Geneva, from 2002 to 2005.

During his time with the Commission he was directly involved in two GATT rounds of multilateral negotiations – the Tokyo Round from 1973-79 and the Uruguay Round from 1987-1993, and he was twice posted to the Commission Delegation in Geneva (1975-79 as deputy chief negotiator for Tokyo, and again in 1996-2000 as Ambassador and Head of Delegation). In the interval he was lead negotiator for the GATT tariff negotiations after the enlargements with Greece, Spain and Portugal, and later in the same role with Austria, Finland and Sweden.

During his second time in Geneva he was directly involved in some of the WTO’s most contentious disputes in the early days of the Dispute Settlement Understanding. Complaints such as the one attacking the EU import regime for bananas (1996) or the ban on hormone-treated beef (also 1996) presented early challenges to the new system at all stages through the panel and appellate process; in later days he contributed to transatlantic harmony during the EU attacks on the US law on Foreign Sales Corporations (a tax break found to be an illegal export subsidy), in 2000 on the so-called ‘Byrd amendment’ (an illegal remedy for anti-dumping cases) and in 2002 on steel safeguard measures (found to be unjustified in terms of the WTO agreement).

In his earlier career he served for over 10 years with the British Government – at the Board of Trade (later DTI) and in Geneva. He has a degree in classical studies from Merton College, Oxford and speaks French with some Italian and rather less German. Outside GPlus he is associated with the LSE in London, and with the think tank ECIPE in Brussels.

Source:[] Roderick Abbott biography on GPlus' website.

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