Posted by: mulrickillion | January 6, 2012

WTO | 2011 News items – Day 1: Lamy announces study on trade situation as ministers pledge commitment to multilateralism

WTO: 2011 NEWS ITEMS

15 December 2011

MINISTERIAL CONFERENCES: 8TH, GENEVA 2011

Day 1: Lamy announces study on trade situation as ministers pledge commitment to multilateralism

WTO Director-General Pascal Lamy told the opening session of the Geneva Ministerial Conference on 15 December 2011 that he will convene a “panel of multi-stakeholders of the WTO” for a year-long study of present and future trade.

Stressing that the WTO’s decisions can only be taken by its member governments, Mr Lamy said the panel’s findings would help them reflect on what the WTO should do.

He was speaking in a session in which minister after minister expressed regret that the Doha Round negotiations are deadlocked but said they remain committed to the WTO’s multilateral trading system. Only hours earlier a group of 42 WTO members had struck a deal to improve their Government Procurement Agreement.

“The multilateral trading system is at a crossroads,” he said. “In an interlinked world economy in constant transformation, it cannot stay put. Either it advances in the spirit of shared values and enhanced co-operation, or we will face a retreat from multilateralism, at our own peril. Waiting for better times will simply not suffice. A consensus for inaction would simply mean a consensus for more pain for all.”

Mr Lamy said the panel will look at the real drivers of trade, the obstacles it faces, trade patterns, and how to keep transforming trade into development, growth, jobs and poverty alleviation.

“In sum, we must equip the WTO with 21st century software,” he said. . . .

WTO | 2011 News items – Day 1: Lamy announces study on trade situation as ministers pledge commitment to multilateralism

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