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1-to-1 meets begin in Paris on Doha talks

Last Updated: Thursday, October 8, 2009 - 21:53

New Delhi: The US seems to have manage its
way on holding the Doha trade talks among smaller groups and
on bilateral terms though several developing countries,
including India, had opposed the idea.

Negotiations on the contentious WTO issues, including
agricultural subsidy and farmers` protection, are being held
from today at Paris on bilateral basis rather than 20-30 trade
ministers or negotiators meeting in groups.

These are being held between the key WTO member countries
including the US and other OECD (Organisation of Economic
Cooperation and Development) nations, according to highly
place sources.

India too has sent its senior level negotiators headed
by Additional Secretary in the Commerce Ministry D K Mittal.

However, Commerce Ministry officials sought to allay
concerns that the US negotiators are trying to encourage
selective talks on multilateral issues.

The US Trade Representative Ron Kirk had been selling
the idea of consultations among narrow groups so that
differences on the level of market opening and subsidy
reduction can be easily resolved.

During the New Delhi trade ministers meeting in
September, Kirk had insisted that momentum to the trade talks
could come only if discussions were held on within a limited
number of players since it would be a complex process to find
an agreement among 153 WTO members.

Bureau Report

First Published: Thursday, October 8, 2009 - 21:53
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