Disappointment at failure of WTO talks
International negotiators of 153 countries involved have
not managed to reach an agreement in the current round of World Trade
Organization (WTO) talks, held in Geneva, Switzerland.
Discussions were suspended yesterday evening as it became clear that these
discussions in the Doha round, already started back in 2001 and aimed at
liberalising global trade, would fail. Ministers had struggled for more than a
week to reach a consensus on a trade pact.
Countries involved were not able to bridge the gaps to create a more open
and free world trade.
Agricultural affairs were at the heart of the discussions. Especially
emerging markets like India, Brazil and China were hoping the US and the EU
would lower their subsidies for own agriculture production and lower tariff
walls - offering new opportunities and challenges.
The negotiations failed because the US could not agree with the emerging
bigger Asian countries on farm import rules, the BBC reported. These would allow
countries to protect poor farmers by imposing a tariff on certain goods in the
event of a drop in prices or a surge in imports.
India, China and the US could not agree on the tariff threshold for such an
Washington said that the 'safeguard clause' protecting developing nations
from unrestricted imports had been set too low.
Countries like Paraguay and Uruguay said that the proposals on the table
would allow some major developing economies to close off their markets to other
developing world agricultural exporters, like them - interrupting normal trade
China said the collapse of the talks was a serious setback for the world
economy, while the EU described it as 'heartbreaking'.
The WTO chief, Pascal Lamy, said he would not abandon his efforts to find
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