DAVOS 2011: Rapport sur le commerce de Groupe d’Experts Lancé

The Trade Experts Group interim report was launched at Davos on Jan 28th 2011, 1800 GMT.

Dr K. Y Amoako is a member of the committee, chaired by Pr Jagdish Bhagwati and Peter Sutherland KCMG, which was set up to assess the current environment for trade and to recommend the priority political and regulatory steps needed to increase global trade flows.

The British Prime Minster David Cameron welcomed the findings outlined in the report “The DOHA Round: Setting a dealine, defining a final deal: Interim report – January 2011, which pushed for substantive agreements to be concluded by the summer of 2011, to ensure that the success of the current round of trade negotiations by the end of this year.

Speaking on Thursday 27th Jan, the WTO director general Pascal Lamy said the next stage of the Doha talks would be the first one “where some developing countries will pay a price in terms of market access in manufacturing, in agriculture, in services“.

However, David Cameron, took the opportunity at Davos to emphasize the experts’ opinion that completing the Doha Round will be of great benefit to developing and developed countries.

“Trade is the biggest wealth creator we’ve ever known. And it’s the biggest stimulus we can give our economies right now. A completed trade round could add $170 billion dollars to the world economy.

The four main arguments set out in the report are:

  1. An agreement would provide an insurance policy against future protectionism by consolidating the large amount of unilateral liberalisation that has occurred since the Uruguay Round in the 1990s;
  2. An agreement would result in reforms of farm trade by binding subsidy levels in the developed world and eliminating export subsidies;
  3. An agreement would present the most ambitious package of trade liberalisation and trade facilitation ever negotiated multilaterally, bring economic benefits of at least $360 billion
  4. The failure to reach an agreement would undermine the credibility of the World Trade Organisation and that of multilateralism more generally as a mechanism to address trade

The final report from the group will be published in the spring of 2011 and is already gaining much support for its recommendation that world leaders to do more to combat protectionism and boost global trade to ensure growth and prosperity for all. This was a message that many at delegates echoed at DAVOs this year.

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Notes to editors

  1. In November 2010 the heads of government of Germany, Great Britain, Indonesia and Turkey created an Experts Group to report on the priority actions that have to be taken to combat protectionism and to boost global trade
  2. The Trade Experts Group interim report was launched in Davos on January 28, 1800 GMT
  3. The final report will be published in spring 2011 and will provide analysis and specific recommendations for boosting global trade in the short and medium-term through tackling tariff, regulatory, administrative and physical barriers to trade
  4. The members of the panel have been drawn from a range of advanced and developing countries and, while all are experts on trade and economics, each brings a different set of skills and experience
  5. The two co-chairs are Pr Jagdish Bhagwati and Peter Sutherland KCMG. The other members are Pr Richard Baldwin, Dr K.Y. Amoako, Dr Muhammad Chatib Basri, Dr Eckart Guth, Dr Jaime Serra, Pr Subidey Togan and Pr Jürgen Von Hagen.

Experts’ Group Terms of Reference

To assess the current environment for trade and to recommend the priority political and regulatory steps needed to increase global trade flows in the short and medium term, in particular:

  • To present an analysis of the global welfare potential at stake in the various options for the conclusion of the Doha Round, in support of the WTO negotiations as they approach their final stage; and,
  • To define a longer term approach to trade liberalisation and regional integration in support of the multilateral trading system, including steps to tackle regulatory, administrative and physical barriers to trade.
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