Group of Eight, the world's top eight industrial nations
meeting in St Petersburg, softened their stance on farm
subsidies in a bid to revive the failed WTO negotiations.
Leaders of the world's leading industrialised powers
also conferred with the leaders of Brazil, China, India,
Mexico and South Africa in an effort to remove the deadlock
and spur momentum of negotiations ahead of the Doha
am convinced that now is the time for us to make a political
decision, whatever it might be," reports quoted
Brazilian President Luiz Ignacio Lula da Silva as saying
after a meeting with US President George W Bush. "We
cannot leave it in the hands of our negotiators only.
They already have done immense work, but now it seems
to me that they don't have any hidden card in their
pockets anymore. Now we're the ones that have to take
our cards from the pockets," he added.
Union Commission president Jose Manuel Barosso, however,
sounded evasive when he said, "We gave a mandate
to our respective negotiators to come to an agreement
on modalities within one month."
G-8 directive does not affect Russia since it is not
a member of the World Trade Organisation.
Doha Round should deliver real cuts in tariffs, effective
cuts in subsidies and real new trade flows," a
summit issued at the G-8 said, adding, "we commit
ourselves to substantial improvement for market access
in trade in both agriculture and industrial products
and expanding opportunities in trade in services."
WTO meeting in Geneva ended early this month without
an agreement on how to cut duties on farm and industrial
goods as the rich nations, mainly the US, stuck to their
position and refused to yield on farm subsidy cuts.
talks have been deadlocked for months as neither the
European Union nor the US, or the G20 group of developing
nations will agree on tariff cuts.
both at Geneva and at the G-8 summit, failed to broker
a deal for Russia to join the WTO. The European leaders
also failed to persuade the Russians to ratify an energy
charter committing them to providing a stable supply
of gas and oil.
of government of the US, the UK, France, Japan, Canada,
Italy, Russia and Germany who have given themselves
a month's time to salvage an agreement on world trade,
said they are "fully committed to the development
dimension of ongoing WTO talks."
agriculture we are committed to substantially reducing
trade-distorting domestic support and to the parallel
elimination by the end
of 2013 of all forms of export subsidies as well as
establishment of effective disciplines on all export
measures with equivalent effect as agreed in Hong Kong...We
urge all parties to work with utmost urgency for conclusion
of the round by 2006-end to strengthen multilateral
trading system," the statement added.