NAM and Business Groups Weigh in on Stalled Doha Talks

By May 2, 2011Trade

This morning the National Association of Manufacturers joined by the American Farm Bureau Federation, Business Roundtable, Coalition of Services Industries, Emergency Committee for American Trade, National Foreign Trade Council, U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the U.S. Council for International Business issued a joint statement about the lack of progress in the Doha Round. Over the past few weeks talks in Geneva have stalled. Here is the joint statement issued today:

We deeply regret that the WTO Doha Development Agenda trade round has not yet been able to achieve its intended objective of promoting world economic growth by expanding trade.

Since 2001, the United States and the U.S. manufacturing, services, and agriculture communities have been steadfast in their support for the Doha Round and of efforts by U.S. and other negotiators to try to break the negotiating deadlock by offering constructive alternatives in each negotiating area. We continue to seek an outcome that would open markets around the world, produce new trade flows, grow our economies and sustain and create jobs. But an agreement will not be possible unless all major economies make meaningful contributions.

A trade round is about opening markets and setting the rules for world trade for decades so it must address the reality that all major developed and advanced developing WTO Members that have benefitted from past rounds enormously have a responsibility to the world trading system to undertake significant market opening measures.  It is clear that this is not happening.    

We believe that what is currently on the table in Geneva lacks balance and ambition.  According to the participants in the negotiations, the gaps in services, agriculture and manufactured goods appear to be unbridgeable under current circumstances. Real change in the substantive direction of the negotiations is the way the Round will produce meaningful results, an objective we continue to strongly support.

We continue to maintain strong confidence in the WTO as an institution, its system of rules, and its role as a bulwark for open trade and against protectionism as proven by the recent financial crisis. We encourage the United States and all WTO Members to devote their energy to finding a productive, trade-expanding direction for the Doha Round and the multilateral trading system. We remain ready to contribute our ideas to such an effort.”

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