Doha revisited?

While President Obama was doing the comedy circuit last week, the global economy continues to collapse.

From Washington Post:

Global trade will shrink by 9 percent this year in the most devastating collapse since World War II, the World Trade Organization said Monday.

The WTO said commerce in rich countries would fall furthest, by about 10 percent. But poorer nations may suffer the most because they are more dependent on exports for growth.

Trade has grown unabated since 1982.

For the last 30 years trade has been an ever increasing part of economic activity, with trade growth often outpacing gains in output," WTO chief Pascal Lamy said.

"The depleted pool of funds available for trade finance has contributed to the significant decline in trade flows, in particular in developing countries."

Meanwhile in Addis Ababa, the Doha Round may still be breathing.

From Reuters:

"African countries would highly benefit from the conclusion of the Doha negotiations," WTO Director-General Pascal Lamy told reporters at a conference of African Union trade ministers.

Lamy said WTO ministerial discussions had been delayed for reasons including the change of administration in the United States.

He said he intended to resume the political discussion "as soon as possible" but was waiting for the right time.

"I'm waiting impatiently for signals because (a ministerial meeting) would be the right way to respond to the desire of developing countries and to give a signal that during this crisis, at least the low hanging fruit has been cropped."

African trade ministers have been discussing the global crisis and their relationship with the Group of 20 nations for two days at African Union headquarters in Ethiopia.

Lamy warned that protectionist policies by western governments could hurt poor countries during the crisis.

"Africa would probably be the biggest victim of protectionism if we don't resist it," he said. "We have to make sure we don't constrain trade more with protectionist policies."

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At Tuesday, March 24, 2009 9:47:00 AM, Anonymous here in jo'burg said...

Doha rounds will never be revisited. wake up people, Obama is bought and sold by the same corporate lobbyists that are dumping on the 3rd world.


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