TWN Info Service on WTO and Trade Issues (June 07/20)

22 June 2007

G90 Plus Developing Countries issue Development Declaration on WTO's Doha Talks

The G90 Plus alliance of developing countries held a press conference on afternoon of Thursday 21 June to announce that their members had adopted a Development Declaration on Development Concerns and Issues in the Current WTO Negotiations.

The G90 Plus comprises the ACP Group, the Africa Group and the LDC  Group and two individual countries, Bolivia and Venezuela.

They represent a majority of the developing country members in the WTO.

The Declaration contains 3 parts -- on the centrality of development, on the negotiating process, and on the substantial positions of the countries on key issues including agriculture, NAMA, services, TRIPS etc.

The press conference was addressed by the Chairs of the ACP, LDC and Africa Groups.

The G90 Plus Declaration was launched at the same time as news went out of the collapse of the G4 talks in Potsdam.  

The Declaration criticises the lack of transparency of the G4 process and calls for a multilateral process in which all countries can fully participate. "Content cannot be sacrificed for timelines. It is more important to get agreements right than to meet deadlines," it says.

It acknowledges that many studies show most developing countries will gain little or nothing and many will be losers.  The Round must not cause deindustrialisation or import surges that affect farmers' livelihoods, as this would defeat the development objectives of the Round.

The 32 proposals represent the alliance's positions on the issues being negotiated.

(1) A press release on the Declaration

(2) The Development Declaration of the G90 Plus

They were sent out by the G90 Plus to the members of the press that attended the press conference. 

Martin Khor