With recent speculation over who will succeed Dominique Strauss-Kahn as Managing Director of the IMF, the topic of emerging market representation at the multi-lateral level has risen once again. One of the key factors in the continued stalling of the Doha Development Round of the WTO trade negotiations has been the concern among emerging and developing economies that their voice is not heard by the industrialised countries of the US and the EU. And so for the talks to conclude their interests need to be fairly reflected in the agreements.
Trade needs to be seen as a tool for alleviating poverty, not as a means of making rich countries richer. In order for progress to be made in the negotiations and in the fight against poverty, the world needs to listen more to what is in the best interests of developing countries.
Only last week at the G8 summit in Deauville, David Cameron reiterated his call for concluding the Doha round by the end of the year. But we have heard these pledges for the last two years now.
Trade negotiations need to become de-politicised if any meaningful agreements are going to emerge. President Obama should not view trade negotiations as a means of securing the vote of US cotton farmers; he should view talks as part of his obligation to serve the world’s poor.
With continued debate on aid effectiveness and how much of GDP we should commit to international development, not enough discussion has been focused on the impact that trade agreements can have on the fight against poverty. If you would like to get involved in the debate on how trade can deliver quick results on a global scale please see Trade Out of Poverty’s events page for more information on the seminar series “Trade, Growth and Development: the Fast Track Out of Poverty”.
With recent speculation over who will succeed Dominique Strauss-Kahn as Managing Director of the IMF, the topic of emerging market representation at the multi-lateral level has risen once again.