Jun 26, 2008

WTO: Bold Call Says Australia

Simon Crean says that Lamy has made a bold call. We agree we need leadership if we are to make progress in this negotiation which is so critical to future prosperity for New Zealand.

It is good to see that Crean appears aware of risks. Interestingly he mentions services. There is a huge amount of work needed to get any progress on services in the next few weeks.

Australian Minister for Trade Simon Crean on Thursday welcomed a decision by the WTO to hold a meeting, calling it a bold call.
WTO Director General Pascal Lamy has suggested a meeting of WTO Trade Ministers be held in Geneva on July 21 with the aim of pushing the Doha negotiations to a successful conclusion.
"I have been urging this course of action for some time and in discussions again yesterday with Director General Lamy, conveyed to him my full support for this move," Crean said in a statement.
"This decision by Director General Lamy means we are now within reach of a breakthrough on the core of the Doha deal on agriculture, industrial goods and services," he said.
"Although this decision is not without risk, it represents strong leadership. The danger of inaction now is far greater than the risks of attempting to secure an outcome. If we don't secure a deal on these core areas of the Round now, the talks may drift for some time to come," he added.
Crean said Australia would continue to push for an outcome that helps Australian exporters gain better access to overseas markets in agriculture, industrial goods and services.