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Henry Gao

Professor of Law

Henry Gao is Professor of Law at Singapore Management University and Senior Fellow at the Centre for International Governance Innovation (CIGI). With law degrees from three continents, he started his career as the first Chinese lawyer at the WTO Secretariat. Before moving to Singapore in late 2007, he taught law at University of Hong Kong, where he was also the Deputy Director of the East Asian International Economic Law and Policy Program. He has taught at the IELPO program in Barcelona and the Academy of International Trade Law in Macau.

Henry has been an advisor on trade issues for many national governments as well as the WTO, UN, World Bank, ADB, APEC, ASEAN, EU and the World Economic Forum. His papers have appeared in many journals such as the International and Comparative Law Quarterly, Journal of International Economic Law, World Trade Review, Harvard International Law Journal, and the Journal of World Trade. His works have been cited in government reports as well as the World Trade Report by the WTO and the Digital Economy Report by UNCTAD.

Henry has extensive experience in conducting executive training programs for government officials. Over the past two decades, he has designed and delivered numerous training courses for the governments of China, Hong Kong, Singapore, Canada, Australia, as well as major international donors such as the UN, EU, Asian Development Bank and ASEAN. He was the Academic Coordinator of the Regional Trade Policy Course for Asia Pacific when it was first launched and played an instrumental role in establishing the flagship WTO technical assistance program in the region.

Henry sits on the Advisory Board of the WTO Chairs Program, which was established by the WTO Secretariat in 2009 to promote research and teaching on WTO issues in leading universities around the world. He also sits on the Advisory Board of the Hinrich Foundation a unique Asia-based philanthropic organization that works to advance mutually beneficial and sustainable global trade. He is also the Advisor on Trade Negotiations for the Asia-Pacific Research and Training Network (ARTNeT) of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific.

Henry is a member of editorial boards of the Journal of International Economic Law and Journal of Financial Regulation, both published by Oxford University Press. He also sits on the Academic Board of the John H. Jackson Moot Court Competition (formerly ELSA WTO Moot Court).

He was recently interviewed by the Economist for its Money Talks podcast episode on “How globalisation gave way”, and his new paper analyzing China’s changing perspectives on the WTO was quoted as an “invaluable” paper by the Financial Times in its feature article on China’s 20th anniversary in the WTO. His new book “Between Market Economy and State Capitalism: China’s State-Owned Enterprises and the World Trading System” was published by Cambridge University Press in November 2022.

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Henry Gao