Thu, May 19, 2005 - Page 4 News List

Next WTO envoy takes up his position


Lin Yi-fu (林義夫), Taiwan's new representative to the WTO headquarters, formally assumed office on Tuesday upon presenting his credentials to WTO Secretary-General Supachai Panitchpakdi.

Lin, the new head of the Permanent Mission of the Separate Customs Territory of Taiwan, Penghu, Kinmen and Matsu to the WTO, told Supachai that his first mission in Geneva is to join in the WTO's efforts to conclude the Doha round of trade negotiations so that the Doha commitments can be set as goals at the next WTO ministerial meeting.

That meeting is expected to be held in Hong Kong at the end of this year.

Lin, a seasoned official in foreign trade affairs, has been acquainted with Supachai since Taiwan became a formal WTO member in early 2002.

Lin and Supachai, the then trade ministers from Taiwan and Thailand, led their teams to conclude bilateral trade talks between the two countries not long afterwards.

The two have also met several times at WTO meetings since then.

Lin, who headed Taiwan's delegation to the 2003 WTO Ministerial meeting in Cancun, Mexico, assured Supachai that he will try his utmost to help facilitate progress in the Doha round of negotiations since the talks have entered a "crucial" juncture.

Supachai told Lin that it was vitally important for WTO members to reach some form of consensus before July on the Doha round of negotiations.

Supachai also said it was a pleasant experience working with Lin's predecessor, Yen Ching-chang (顏慶章), in Geneva.

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