“Revive plans for development through trade in 2012, despite collapse of Doha Round” – 60 MPs and MEPs urge EU Governments

60 MPs and MEPs from all parties have issued a New Year call to EU governments to revive plans to boost development of the poorest countries through trade in 2012, despite the suspension of the Doha ‘Development’ Round before Christmas.

Condemning the “shameful conspiracy of silence” over the collapse of the Doha trade talks even though they were supposed to be a “Development Round” – the 60 Parliamentarians say:

“It would be tragic if hopes of creating opportunities for the poorest countries to trade out of poverty were to be abandoned because the Doha Round has stalled over disagreements between more developed countries.  It would also be unnecessary.  There are important steps which the EU (with or without other developed countries) could take which do not require unanimous agreement by all WTO members; nor do they require the poorest countries to reciprocate.  Doha may have gone into deep freeze in 2011 but we can revive development trade hopes in 2012.”

The statement signed by MPs and MEPs and organised by the all party group Trade Out of Poverty (led in the UK by Hilary Benn, Menzies Campbell, Lord Hastings, Peter Lilley and Clare Short) has been sent to every European government and calls on them and the whole developed world:

• “not to abandon the Development aims of the Doha Round even if the Round cannot be brought to a successful conclusion,

• to recognise that:

o  though aid and debt relief can alleviate poverty, the only sustainable route out of poverty is through trade,

o that the poorest countries of the world account for 20% of the world’s population but less than 2% of world trade,

o that their industries represent no threat to our economies but if we exclude their exports they cannot hope to grow,

o that if the least developed countries are enabled to grow through exporting to us they will import more from us – providing a valuable boost to world trade.

• to take the following steps without waiting for other countries to follow:

o open their markets unconditionally to duty free quota free access to exports from the least developed countries (without demanding reciprocity),

o implify trade rules to let developing countries share in world trade to end rich country export and domestic subsidies which hit poor countries’ trade,

o help reduce tariffs between the poorest countries,

o support investment in roads, ports and commercial infrastructure on which trade depends”

Peter Lilley said: “There is no need to wait for the tottering Doha round, whose disputes are mainly about trade between the rich and middle-income countries.  Any G20 member could open their markets unilaterally and shame the others into action. The G20 can act now to help the poorest help themselves.”

For all enquiries please contact: Annabel Palmer (Director, Trade Out of Poverty)
020 7219 0157
07540 770774
annabel@tradeoutofpoverty.org

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By | 2016-03-29T11:11:07+01:00 February 9th, 2012|News|Comments Off on “Revive plans for development through trade in 2012, despite collapse of Doha Round” – 60 MPs and MEPs urge EU Governments

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