World Trade Organization (WTO)

WTO Doha Round Bulletin

Week ending 25 June 2004 (Issue 2004/20)

Key Issues

Trade Negotiations Committee to meet next week

The second post-Cancún meeting of the WTO's Trade Negotiations Committee (TNC) is scheduled to be held in Geneva on 30 June. The meeting comes at a critical time in the lead-up to the 27-28 July WTO General Council meeting. The chairs of the eight Doha round negotiating groups are expected to report on the status of their work, and delegations' views will be sought on the possible content of a July package of negotiating frameworks.

The TNC operates under the authority of the General Council with a mandate to supervise the overall conduct of negotiations in the Doha round, and is chaired by WTO Director-General Dr Supachai of Thailand. The Committee was set up by the Doha Declaration, which assigned it the capacity to create the eight subsidiary negotiating groups which handle the individual Doha negotiating subjects. These cover agriculture, services, industrial products, the environment, intellectual property, special and differential treatment for developing countries, rules and dispute settlement.

Australia contributes $500,000 to the WTO's Global Trust Fund

Australia has recently announced a further contribution of $500,000 to the WTO's Global Trust Fund, bringing Australia's total contribution to over $1.4 million since the Fund was established in 2002. The Global Trust Fund was set up at Doha to fund capacity building programs and support developing country participation in the Doha round negotiations, in recognition of the major role that trade liberalisation plays in promoting economic development and alleviating poverty. The World Bank has found that almost two-thirds of the gains that would be derived from the full liberalisation of the international trade in goods would flow to low and middle income countries.

The Australian Government, through its development cooperation program, has now committed to providing over $30 million in trade-related technical assistance in 2004-05 to developing countries in the Asia-Pacific region and around the world.

The full text of Minister Downer and Minister Vaile's joint media release announcing the contribution can be accessed at:
http://www.foreignminister.gov.au/releases/2004/joint_vaile_wto_090604.html.

Forthcoming meetings in Geneva

JUNE

28 Trade Policy Review Body – Benin/Burkina Faso/Mali

28 Committee on Budget, Finance and Administration

28 Council for Trade in Services – Special Session

29 Technical Barriers to Trade – Dedicated Session

29 Working Party on the Accession of Uzbekistan

29 Negotiating Group on Rules – Regional Trade Agreements

30 Trade Policy Review Body – Benin/Burkina Faso/Mali

30 Trade Negotiations Committee

JULY

1 Committee on Technical Barriers to Trade

2 Committee on Market Access

2 Council for Trade in Services – Special Session

5 Council for Trade in Goods

6-8 Textiles Monitoring Body

9 Committee on Government Procurement

Contact Us

Trade Policy Section
Office of Trade Negotiations
Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade
BARTON ACT 0221
Fax: (02) 6261 3514
or e-mail trade.consult@dfat.gov.au

This bulletin is issued by the Office of Trade Negotiations, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. It summarises key WTO Doha Round-related activities over the past week.

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