Three-month long Doha trade talks begin in Geneva today

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New Delhi, Feb 1 (ANI): Representatives of key World Trade Organisation (WTO) members that include India, China and US will begin the three-month long Doha trade talks in Geneva from Monday to sort out problematic issues that have been obstructing the winding up of the Doha trade talks.

The trade negotiators, who are working against a tight schedule, are expected to be involved in preparing the grounds for a high-level meeting that will be held in March.

An official said that unless trade negotiators are able to sort out the problems with respect to agricultural and industrial goods among the WTO members, it would be tough to achieve the 2010 deadline set for the conclusion of the talks.

Several global leaders, including the G-20 members have been pressing for completion of the talks in 2010.

The official further said, "The stock taking exercise which may be done by senior officials is very important for the progress of the talks. Everyone is saying that by the end of this year the Round should be concluded."

The negotiators are expected to hold parallel deliberations on agriculture, non-agricultural products and services in the month of February. While intellectual property rights, technology transfer, trade in goods and trade facilitation issues would come up in March for discussion.

The key issues of the talk that have come as an obstacle include high-level of farm subsidy in developed countries, demand for better market access for industrial products in the developing countries, level of farmers' protection in the poor and developing countries like India. (ANI)

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