News

Situation unchanged in NAMA talks, reports Chair

Original Publication Date: 
8 June, 2015
The growing disquiet and discontent among the large majority of developing countries over the non-transparent manner in which talks over the post-Bali work programme are taking place at the WTO surfaced Monday at an informal meeting of the Negotiating Group on Market Access for Non-Agricultural Products (NAMA), as also at an informal Heads of Delegation (HOD) meeting in the afternoon.

Sharp polarisation at NAMA talks

Original Publication Date: 
8 June, 2015
Members of the World Trade Organization remained sharply polarized Monday over the "five approaches" put forward by the Chair of the negotiating group for further talks to finalize outcomes in market access on industrial products in the post-Bali work programme for concluding the Doha Round.

Massive leak of TISA trade documents “highlights madness of secrecy”: PSI

Original Publication Date: 
3 June, 2015
The largest ever leak of negotiating documents from the controversial Trade in Services Agreement (TISA) highlights the madness of secrecy and provides no comfort for users of public services.

Trade in Services Agreement - Press release of Wikileaks

Original Publication Date: 
3 June, 2015
WikiLeaks releases today 17 secret documents from the ongoing TISA (Trade In Services Agreement) negotiations which cover the United States, the European Union and 23 other countries including Turkey, Mexico, Canada, Australia, Pakistan, Taiwan & Israel -- which together comprise two-thirds of global GDP.

Secret trade pact set to rob from the poor - and give to global transport firms: ITF

Original Publication Date: 
3 June, 2015
Classified documents published today by Wikileaks on the Trade in Services Agreement (TISA) foresee consolidated power for big transport industry players – and threaten the public interest, jobs and a voice for workers, says the International Transport Workers’ Federation.

Secret trade pact gives ‘consolidated power’ to global transport firms warns ITF

Original Publication Date: 
3 June, 2015
The ITF warned that classified documents published today by Wikileaks on the Trade in Services Agreement (TISA) foresee consolidated power for big transport industry players and threaten the public interest, jobs and a voice for workers.

Wikileaks Releases Largest Trove of Trade Negotiations Documents in History on Proposed "Trade in Services Agreement" (TISA)

Original Publication Date: 
3 June, 2015
Today, as Ministers meet to further a controversial and little known proposed Trade in Services Agreement (TISA) on the sidelines of the annual Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) meeting, Wikileaks released (wikileaks.org/tisa/) a trove of negotiating texts, including annexes covering a wide range of issues on domestic regulation, financial services, air and maritime transportation, electronic commerce, transparency, telecommunications, professional services, and the natural movement of persons (called “Mode4” in trade agreements.)

Insight: WTO: Where are we heading?

Original Publication Date: 
27 May, 2015
In this Jakarta Post article Iman Pambagyo, Indonesian ambassador in charge of the WTO, strongly criticizes non-transparent negotiations process followed by developed countries and Roberto Azevedo, Director General of WTO to define the Post Bali Work Programme towards 10th WTO Ministerial Conference in Nairobi, Kenya, later this year. He also called upon the ministers from the developing to insist strongly that the conversations in Geneva should be inclusive, transparent and flexibility for developing countries is a must.

Transparency by others, secrecy for WTO

Original Publication Date: 
25 May, 2015
The World Trade Organisation's Director-General Roberto Azevedo is apparently upset that his meetings with trade envoys from seven developed and developing countries to discuss the benchmarks in the market access pillars of agriculture and industrial goods for concluding the Doha Development Agenda (DDA) negotiations by the end of this year are being reported in some publications, including SUNS, according to people familiar with the development.

Concern among developing countries on WTO DG consultations

Original Publication Date: 
22 May, 2015
In a scenario more reminiscent of the bad old days of the pre-WTO trading system, of very restricted "green room" meetings, where a few developing countries are sought to be isolated and pressured to force down an accord on the membership, the WTO DG Mr. Roberto Azevedo has been apparently having closed-door meetings with trade envoys from the United States, the European Union, China, India, Brazil, Australia, and Japan.

Participants call for rapid conclusion of talks on ITA expansion

Original Publication Date: 
18 May, 2015
A meeting of the WTO Committee on the Information Technology Agreement (ITA) on 8 May heard a number of participants calling for the rapid conclusion of the negotiations on the expansion of product coverage under the Information Technology Agreement (ITA). There was no agreement, and the next meeting of the Committee is set for October 2015.

Differences among WTO members on services component of post-Bali work

Original Publication Date: 
15 May, 2015
An informal meeting of the Special Session of the Council for Trade in Services on 7 May showed continuing differences among members, with key developing countries making clear that progress on agriculture and the US-EU concessions therein will be the yardstick for progress in other areas of the Doha negotiations.

South nixes US, EU call for binding autonomous services liberalisation

Original Publication Date: 
15 May, 2015
A large majority of developing countries on Thursday (7 May) firmly rejected demands from the United States, the European Union, and other developed countries for binding the autonomous liberalisation measures taken by them in the services sectors after the Uruguay Round of commitments. The developing countries made clear that they are not willing to undertake "commitments for free" in the Doha services negotiations, several services negotiators told SUNS.

‘Expose U.S. hypocrisy in WTO talks’

Original Publication Date: 
13 May, 2015
In this interview, Deborah James of OWINFS spoke about the ongoing tussle in the WTO around the question of food security. This debate is germane to India, whose government played a role at the last WTO meeting.

Implement Bali Rules of Origin decision, say LDCs

Original Publication Date: 
11 May, 2015
The Least Developed Countries (LDCs) group at the World Trade Organisation (WTO) has called on WTO members to move forward on implementing the Bali Ministerial Decision of 7 December 2013 on preferential rules of origin for the LDCs. This call came at a meeting of the WTO Committee on Rules of Origin (CRO) on 30 April.

Dumping sequencing or agri-reform process in WTO Doha Round?

Original Publication Date: 
11 May, 2015
The WTO Director-General, Mr. Roberto Azevedo, appears to have attempted Tuesday (5 May) to tweak the Doha trade talks by dumping the "sequencing" framework, thus enabling the US to avoid answering tough questions on domestic support in agriculture for concluding the negotiations and ensuring a successful Nairobi Ministerial Conference.

North-South divide in WTO services talks

Original Publication Date: 
8 May, 2015
A large majority of developing and least-developed countries at the World Trade Organisation (WTO) have demanded that the Annex C of the Hong Kong Ministerial Declaration must remain the basis for drawing-up the post-Bali work programme on services, according to trade envoys familiar with the non-attributable summary issued by the chair of the Doha services negotiations on 27 April.

South against Doha "re-calibration", jettisoning "development"

Original Publication Date: 
6 May, 2015
A large majority of developing countries appear to have disapproved of the "re-calibration" strategy in the Doha Development Agenda (DDA) negotiations, being promoted by the WTO head, Roberto Azevedo, and the industrialised countries, that will change the existing goalposts of the talks, to the detriment of its "development goals".

D-G must come clean on previous mandates on Doha

Original Publication Date: 
30 April, 2015
In the background of informal meeting of the Trade Negotiations Committee convened for 27 April Chakravarthi Raghavan argues that the large majority of developing countries hope WTO Director-General Roberto Azevedo will come clean on what he intends to do with the previous mandates on the Doha Round talks, and whether in fact he intends to dump them as the US wants, and drastically change the special and differential treatment provisions in agriculture for developing countries in order to open their markets to heavily subsidised agri-exports of the US.

Agriculture: WTO Members still far from convergence on key issues, says Chair

Original Publication Date: 
30 April, 2015
The Doha trade talks and efforts to reach an accord on a post-Bali work programme are stuck on agriculture issues of domestic support and market access, with members standing firm on their positions and are a "long way" to meet the July deadline, the Chair of the agriculture negotiations said on 24 April.