Azevêdo tries to resuscitate Bali deal

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By Jacqui Fatka

World Trade Organization Director-General Roberto Azevêdo told a meeting of ambassadors to the WTO on Sept. 15 that “we must begin a period of intensive and comprehensive consultations, starting now” on taking the Bali package forward.

Emphasizing the importance of this coming work, he said that “we are in a very precarious position…and at a present I am not sure that the scale of the risk is fully appreciated by all.”

WTO talks again hit a roadblock this summer when it missed a self-imposed deadline to implement its Trade Facilitation Agreement reached in Bali last year. Azevêdo said then that negotiators would need to return to their home countries and reflect on how to advance trade talks.

In his speech to the members Azevêdo said there is a clear interplay between concerns relating to the negotiations on public stockholding for food security purposes and the adoption of the protocol of amendment on the Trade Facilitation Agreement.

Azevêdo recognized that negotiators must “find a way of providing comfort for those with outstanding concerns on food security.”

Bob Stallman, president of the American Farm Bureau Federation, explained that some countries want greater freedom to subsidize and stockpile food.

“The Trade Facilitation Agreement reached in Bali came about only after negotiators agreed that some countries should be allowed to subsidize and stockpile food for citizens who have difficulty paying for it. Now, it seems, India wants a final agreement on that issue before they will move forward with customs reform. We understand their eagerness to settle that issue, but this intransigence represents a failure to honor previous promises,” Stallman said after the missed deadline earlier this year.

Azevedo said there is a need to move quickly to see if the member countries are able to restore momentum to its work. He has called on the chairs to restart the process of consulting with members on differing issues with immediate effect.

“Now I think it is time to reduce that uncertainty by bringing some clarity to the assessment of the situation and testing whether there is a way forward,” he said.

He urged the members to listen to and engage with each other, and do so with a sense of real commitment and urgency. “In my assessment, this can’t simply be business as usual,” he noted.

He said there will be a meeting of the Trade Negotiating Committees on Oct. 6 to report on the outcome of the consultations and he hopes it will be “to report collectively that we have found a way to move forward.”

Fonte: FeedStuffs

4 comentários sobre “Azevêdo tries to resuscitate Bali deal

  1. Aldo Frattezi Gonçalves 19/09/2014 / 17:43

    We can only hope for an agreement, but it’s rather unlikely that countries like the USA will ever relinquish the rights to subsidize agriculture. It’s a sad reality that true division of production competence, in the international scale, is highly improbable if not impossible. As it stands, the advancements in brought by treaties as the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trades could only be implemented as long as exceptions are made for agriculture. Even as traditional war loses its meaning, the rhetoric of strategic value and national and defense cannot be overcome.


  2. Gabriela Sodré Mendes 24/09/2014 / 16:20

    The Bali Package, which the World Trade Organization Director-General Roberto Azevêdo is concerned about, is the trade agreement that resulted from the 9th Ministerial Conference of the World Trade Organization that took place in Bali (Indonesia), on December of 2013. Its goal was in the sense of lowering global trade barriers. However, despite its unanimous approval, the measures for its implementation have not yet been developed in a way that it could be effectively applied and that is the concern of the director, otherwise it will have been done in vain.


  3. Henrique Capanema 24/09/2014 / 16:48

    The Bali Package is a trade agreement resulting from the Ninth Ministerial Conference of the World Trade Organization in Bali that aimed at lowering global trade barriers and is the first agreement reached through the WTO that is approved by all its members. Before the agreement, the negotiations repeatedly came close to collapsing. India’s demand that it should be allowed to extend its domestic agricultural subsidies indefinitely was met by opposition from the U.S., while Cuba, Bolivia, Nicaragua, and Venezuela objected to the removal of a text relating to the U.S. embargo against Cuba. The Agreement will reduce red-tape and streamline customs to reduce that uncertainty by bringing some clarity to the assessment of the situation and testing whether there is a way forward.


  4. Túlio Albuquerque 26/09/2014 / 1:45

    O artigo diz respeito às dificuldades encontradas pela Organização Mundial do Comércio para intermediar as negociações entre os mais diversos países. Tais dificuldades estariam a impedir que acordos sobre as mais variadas matérias fossem celebrados.
    Para analisar tal situação é necessário sabermos quais são essas dificuldades encontradas pela OMC para a realização dos acordos comerciais. O artigo cita o caso da Índia, que se recusou a assinar o acordo de facilitação de comércio de alimentos, pois alega que deveria haver, concomitantemente a esse acordo, um outro que tratasse a respeito da segurança dos alimentos, isto é, um acordo que apontasse direitos e deveres dos países negociantes quanto a qualidade segurança dos alimentos vendidos e comprados.
    Porém, não me parece que empecilhos como estes é que estão a atrapalhar as negociações. Não que tal situação não gere mais dificuldades para a realização dos acordos, mas, tais empecilhos, a meu ver, não são criados voluntariamente pelos países a fim de dificultar a concretização de acordos. Empecilhos como estes são necessários para qualquer negociação, visto que cada país tem o dever de resguardar os interesses de sua população.
    Portanto, há que se distinguir as dificuldades encontradas para a realização dos acordos. Alguns empecilhos, como o citado acima, são mais do que necessários para a concretização de um acordo, sob pena de, no futuro, tal acordo ter que ser descumprido por um determinado país, em razão deste estar sofrendo prejuízos, os quais deveriam mas não foram tratados na ocasião do acordo. Já os países que apresentam empecilhos com o objetivo claro de dificultar ou postergar a realização do acordo, devem ser chamados para solucionar o problema e, persistindo o dolo em atrapalhar o acordo, devem ser deixados do lado de fora das negociações, pois aquele que atrapalha algo, no mínimo, não tem interesse.

    The article concerns the difficulties encountered by the World Trade Organization to mediate negotiations between the various countries. Such difficulties would prevent agreements on various matters were concluded.
    To analyze this situation is necessary to know what are the difficulties encountered by the WTO to achieve the trade agreements. The article cites the case of India, who refused to sign the agreement facilitating food trade, he argues that there should be concomitant to this agreement, another that deals about food safety, that is, an agreement that pointed rights and duties of dealers countries as the quality safety of food sold and bought.
    But I do not think that is how these obstacles are getting in the way negotiations. Not that such a situation does not create more difficulties for the realization of the agreements, but such obstacles, in my view, are not created voluntarily by countries in order to hinder the implementation of agreements. Obstacles like these are needed for any negotiation, since each country has a duty to protect the interests of its population.
    Therefore, we must distinguish the difficulties encountered in the realization of the agreements. Some drawbacks, as mentioned above, are more than necessary to achieve an agreement, otherwise, in the future, such an agreement have to be breached by a particular country, be suffering because of this loss, but which should not were treated at the time of the agreement. The countries that present obstacles to clear hinder or delay the realization of the agreement objective, should be called to solve the problem and, persisting in deceit derail the agreement, must be left outside the negotiations, for he who disturbs something, at least, has no interest.


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