WASHINGTON, DC – The National Foreign Trade Council (NFTC) today announced its strong support for a U.S. comprehensive global agricultural trade reform package that should move talks forward in the Doha Round.
“This is a major step forward for the Doha Development Agenda talks. It comes at a crucial time with the WTO Ministerial in Hong Kong only a two months away,” said Bill Reinsch, NFTC President. “If other nations follow U.S. leadership, significant progress can be made in Hong Kong,” he added.
In past world trade talks, inability to reach a compromise on agricultural trade issues has been a roadblock to progress on other important areas of trade liberalization including trade in industrial goods, services, and customs procedures.
Commenting on the importance of the newly proposed reform package, Reinsch said, “Breaking the deadlock on agriculture is key not only because liberalizing trade in this area is vital to worldwide growth and development, but also because it will allow movement on services and industrial goods negotiations. These are trade sectors of tremendous importance to American business.”
The National Foreign Trade Council has been calling for U.S. leadership at the upcoming Hong Kong ministerial. The conclusion of the Doha Round is already a year past its deadline and aggressive action is needed to bring it to a successful conclusion in 2006. Reinsch urged other nations to follow the U.S. example. “This proposal shows the U.S. is committed to making the Doha Round a success for American business, farmers, workers and consumers. The NFTC has a delegation of corporate members in Geneva right now working to encourage other nations to make the same commitment to the Doha Round.