Info Service on WTO and Trade Issues (Dec09/12)
Ag Chair to accelerate meetings to fortnightly sessions
Geneva, 11 Dec (Kanaga Raja) -- The Chair of the agriculture negotiations at the WTO told Members on Friday that he is planning on expanding the current monthly week of meetings to once every fortnight in early February and March 2010.
an informal meeting of the Special Session of the Agriculture Committee
on Friday morning, following a week of discussions that focused on technical
work, Chairman David Walker of
to trade officials, this comes following this week's presentation by
The discussion on the issue of templates remains in the transition from Step 1 (identifying what data are needed, when, and how it should be presented) to Step 2 (designing the forms for spelling out commitments), said trade officials.
The week also saw a discussion by Members on the issue of data - in particular, the latest submissions from Members - which will be needed for the final agreement.
According to trade officials, one set of data was on domestic consumption, which is needed to calculate the size of tariff quotas for products that are going to be declared "sensitive".
to trade officials, the
Another set of data was on the value of production, which is needed to calculate commitments on various types of domestic support.
to trade officials,
On the issue of tariff simplification, the EU illustrated how its proposed simplification would cut by 99% the number of its tariff lines on products containing milk fats and proteins, sugar and starch. There would be a reduction from 27,720 lines to less than 300.
According to trade officials, the EU said the tariffs themselves would also be simplified so that they are either ad valorem (percentages of the price) or specific (for example, euros per ton).
Further meetings are scheduled for January, February and March 2010. +