|Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York|
Secretary-General disappointed by failure to conclude doha trade talks
The following statement was issued today by the Spokesperson for UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon:
The Secretary-General is disappointed to hear that the tremendous efforts made by key players to conclude the seven-year-long Doha Round this year have not yielded the desired outcome. Success was particularly important at this juncture when the world faces major development challenges that include the food, fuel and financial crises, climate change, weak progress towards the Millennium Development Goals and the fight against poverty, and growing protectionist sentiments amid concern over global recession.
The Secretary-General spoke today to Pascal Lamy, Director-General of the World Trade Organization on this issue. Looking forward, the two leaders stressed the need to ensure that the break in negotiations would not be long. They hoped that by regrouping forces, the Doha negotiations could be revitalized before the end of the year.
The Secretary-General is convinced that a successful conclusion to the talks was needed to energize international cooperation towards ameliorating conditions for developing countries to derive gains from trade and investment-led globalization. It would also advance efforts to improve the livelihoods of their peoples, especially the most poor and vulnerable, as well as provide an important boost to the global economy by removing existing distortions in markets and strengthen trade governance, grounded on a development agenda.
Meanwhile, in the context of the global food crisis, the Secretary-General has urged nations to reconsider their policies restricting agricultural imports and exports, as well as take concrete steps to exempt food purchases for humanitarian purposes. Special efforts must be made to improve production incentives for small farmers in developing countries, as set forth by the United Nations Task Force on the Global Food Crisis.
* *** *