`End game` may be long for reaching trade pact, says Brazil

Last Updated: Monday, September 14, 2009 - 22:42

New Delhi: Brazil, coordinator of the G-20
developing countries, on Friday supported India`s contention that
the vexed Doha trade talks have not really reached the "end
game" as is being made out by the rich nations and also
WTO chief Pascal Lamy.

Brazilian External Affairs Minister Celso Amorim, who is
among the 35 trade ministers at the Delhi informal ministerial
meeting said, "In the game of chess, sometimes the end game
is much longer over the middle game. The fact that we are in
the middle game does not mean it (Doha Round) will finish."

Amorim was clarifying his earlier statement that the Doha
Round talks had reached end game.

Developed countries, he added, have to do much more than
pay a mere "lip service" for development dimension of the
Round which has been in discussion for last seven years
without any breakthrough.

India also reiterated today that "We have a long way to
travel before we can safely say we are in the end game".

Chairing the meeting for the second day, Commerce and
Industry Minister Anand Sharma, wanted to know from the
ministers, especially from the US and the EU, whether there
was any clarity on conclusion of the trade talks by 2010.

"Do we clearly want the Doha Round of negotiations to
conclude in 2010?, he asked.

Given India`s interest in the opening of the global
services trade, Sharma underlined the need for bringing on
board the sector for talks along with agriculture and
industrial goods.

Amorim, while supporting India`s demand, said the Hong
Kong Ministerial meet had set a sequencing which meant that
agreements on agriculture and non-agriculture market access
(NAMA) be reached before any other area.

India has taken the initiative of hosting the meeting of
the important trade ministers and kick-starting the WTO
negotiations which were stalled in July last year on the issue
of protection to farmers of developing countries.

WTO chief Lamy expressed hope that the Delhi meeting
could be the beginning of the end game for conclusion of the
Doha talks.

"I hope Delhi (meeting) can be the beginning of the end
game of the Doha Round," he had said.

Bureau Report

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First Published: Monday, September 14, 2009 - 22:42

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