Mon, Nov 20, 2006 - Page 12 News List

WTO delegation willing to help talks

STAFF WRITER , WITH CNA

The nation's delegation to the WTO is willing to do what it can to help the Negotiating Group on Trade Facilitation (NGTF) work out any difficulties that arise during talks, permanent representative to the WTO Lin Yi-fu (林義夫) said on Saturday.

Lin made the remarks while meeting with Hong Kong permanent representative to the WTO Tony Miller, who in his capacity as NGTF chairman took the initiative to ask the delegation to express its stance on the soon-to-be resumed trade facilitation talks.

The delegation has been a key member of the talks and has so far come up with more than 20 proposals, to which Miller attaches great importance.

Voicing hope that negotiations on the wording of a trade facilitation agreement would begin as soon as possible, Lin told Miller that the delegation is willing to provide assistance in this area.

According to Lin, the major dispute concerning the talks is what issue should be prioritized.

Developing countries insist that addressing the "special and differential treatment of developing and least-developed countries" must be the main priority during the the talks. However, industrialized states insist that regulations governing trade facilitation must be established first.

In addition to participating actively in related talks, the delegation will take steps to offer technical assistance to developing and least-developed countries, Lin said.

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