World Trade Organization (WTO)

WTO Doha Round Bulletin

Week ending 11 June 2004 (Issue 2004/18)

Key Issues

APEC Trade Ministers Meeting - 4-5 June

Mr Vaile attended a meeting of APEC Ministers responsible for Trade (MRT) in Pucon, Chile on 4-5 June 2004. Amongst other items on the agenda, Ministers discussed the state of the Doha Round and issued a strong statement of support urging progress in the negotiations.

In particular, Ministers directed officials to "work with a sense of urgency" to achieve results by July 2004 that include: negotiating frameworks for agriculture and non-agricultural market access; an agreement to launch trade facilitation within the single undertaking; the tabling of services offers from those members who have not yet done so, as well as a timeframe for improving existing offers; and a reaffirmation of the need to make substantial progress in all work areas. The Ministerial Statement also reaffirmed that a high level of ambition in all areas of the Doha Development Agenda must be accompanied by a strong and renewed emphasis on development.

Mr Vaile said that the APEC meeting came at a critical, but promising, phase in the Doha Round and that the statement of support by APEC ministers would help strengthen momentum in the negotiations.

The full text of the APEC MRT Ministerial Statement

A copy of Mr Vaile's Media Release

Agriculture Special Session - 2-4 June

The third post-CancĂșn WTO Agriculture Special Session was held in Geneva on 2-4 June 2004. Negotiations on all three agricultural pillars - market access, export subsidies and domestic support - took place in small informal groups during the week, before New Zealand's Ambassador Groser chaired a concluding plenary session to summarise progress in the negotiations.

Discussions remain difficult and are deadlocked around differences in several key aspects on market access, as well as the concept of parallelism required by the EC's May offer on the elimination of export subsidies.

The next set of agriculture negotiations are scheduled to take place on 23-25 June 2004.

Trade in Services Workshop, Mauritius - 27-28 May

As previewed in Issue 2004/15, the Australian Government-funded Trade in Services Workshop, involving participants from nine Eastern African and Indian Ocean countries, was successfully staged in Port Louis, Mauritius from 27-28 May 2004. The workshop was opened by the Mauritian Minister for Industry, Financial Services and Corporate Affairs, the Hon Khushal Kushiram. The Minister welcomed the Australian initiative and noted that very few of the over 200 negotiating proposals on services currently on the table, come from African countries. Participants were given an appreciation of the current state of services negotiations in the WTO and asked to: formulate requests in line with industry consultations; put together offers through amendment of a schedule of commitments following further industry consultations; and conduct negotiations as per the WTO request/offer negotiation process.

Forthcoming meetings in Geneva

JUNE

14 Trade Policy Review Body - Singapore

15 Working Party on the Accession of Viet Nam

16 Trade Policy Review Body - Singapore

16-17 Council for Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights

17 Committee on Agriculture

18 Council for Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights - Special Session

21 Committee on Trade and Environment

21-23 Textiles Monitoring Body

22-23 Committee on Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures

22 Committee on Trade and Environment - Special Session

22 Dispute Settlement Body

23 Committee on Specific Commitments

23 Working Party on GATS Rules

23-25 Committee on Agriculture - Special Session

24 Council for Trade in Services

24 Working Party on Domestic Regulation

25 Committee on Trade in Financial Services

Contact Us

Trade Policy Section
Office of Trade Negotiations
Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade
BARTON ACT 0221
Fax: (02) 6261 3514
or e-mail trade.consult@dfat.gov.au

This bulletin is issued by the Office of Trade Negotiations, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. It summarises key WTO Doha Round-related activities over the past week.

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