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Doha Round must be completed by Dec,2006: CII

Written by: Staff
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New Delhi, Apr 24 (UNI) The Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) today urged Trade Ministers of member countries of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) to ensure that the Doha Development Round is completed by the scheduled date of December 2006.

The postponement of the April 30, 2006 deadline for completing the modalities for industrial goods and agriculture is a set back to the Development Round and needs to be overcome with intensive negotiations over the next few weeks, CII WTO and Other Trade Agreements Committee Chairman R V Kanoria said.

The postponement of the April 30 deadline is a signal to developed countries to come up with meaningful proposals for substantial reduction in agricultural subsidies if the development objective of the DDA has to be met. The modalities also require reductions in agricultural tariffs.

The modalities on NAMA (Non-Agricultural Market Access) seeks a consensus on the tariff reduction formula where developing countries will have to cut bound tariffs on industrial goods by a lower percentage than the developed countries as part of the less than full reciprocity principle of the Doha Round.

The industry chamber urged trade negotiators to focus on the special and differential treatment in the DDA to ensure that poor countries benefit from the Doha Round.

The differences among the countries must be sorted out quickly for meeting the larger development goal, said CII. If the Round is a failure then faith on WTO as a means of ensuring free and fair world trade will be shaken in many countries, according to the Chamber.

Indian industry is confident that the Doha Round can still be concluded successfully by end 2006 and fully supports the multilateral process of trade negotiations at Geneva.

UNI SS MP VC1610

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