Norway will donate NOK 36,300,000 (CHF 5,320,000) to various WTO trust funds in 2013-2014. An additional NOK 30,000,000 (CHF 4,400,000) will be provided to support the implementation of a future agreement on trade facilitation, in particular for least-developed countries (LDCs), bringing its total contributions since 2001 to NOK 188,400,000 (CHF 27,600,000).
Sweden is for 2014 pledging USD 3 million to the Enhanced Integrated Framework (EIF), through its development agency Sida. The funds will be used for the implementation of trade facilitation projects, among others.
At a ministerial breakfast meeting on 4 December 2013 organized by the Enhanced Integrated Framework (EIF) on the margins of the Ninth WTO Ministerial Conference in Bali, ministers of least-developed countries (LDCs) and donor countries to the EIF underlined the relevance of the EIF for the trade and economic priorities of LDCs, as confirmed by the mid-term review of the programme in 2012.
On 4 December 2013, Yemen cleared the final hurdle to become a WTO member. WTO Ministers adopted Yemen’s WTO terms and conditions of entry at the 9th Ministerial Conference in Bali, Indonesia. Yemen will have until 2 June 2014 to ratify the deal and would become a fully-fledged WTO member 30 days after it notifies the acceptance of its Protocol of Accession to the WTO Director-General.
Director-General Roberto Azevêdo told WTO ministers on 4 December 2013 that he would hold consultations — as urged by a large number of them — in the search for agreement on the set of issues known as the “Bali package”.
The Separate Customs Territory of Taiwan, Penghu, Kinmen and Matsu (Chinese Taipei) is donating USD 200,000 (CHF 183,400) to the Doha Development Agenda Global Trust Fund at the 9th WTO Ministerial Conference in Bali, Indonesia. This brings its contributions since 2002 to USD 1,984,000 (CHF 1,807,000).
Participants in the plurilateral Agreement on Government Procurement (GPA) affirmed at a ministerial meeting during the WTO’s Ninth Ministerial Conference their shared objective of bringing a revised version of the Agreement into force as soon as possible, and in any event no later than 31 March 2014. The revised Agreement, adopted in March 2012, modernizes the Agreement’s text and includes a significant extension of related market access commitments. The resulting gains in market access for the parties’ businesses have been estimated by the WTO Secretariat as in the range of US$ 80 billion to US$ 100 billion annually.
China notified the WTO Secretariat, on 3 December, of a request for consultations with the United States regarding the use of certain methodologies in anti-dumping investigations involving Chinese products.
A deal struck at the Bali Ministerial Conference would benefit a wide range of people, particularly the poor, while failure would weaken the multilateral trading system, which could also hurt the poor, speakers said in the conference’s opening session.
Following two years of successful implementation of China’s LDCs and Accessions Programme (the China Programme), China is contributing USD 400,000 (CHF 362,000) to continue assisting least developed countries (LDCs) in the process of acceding to the WTO.
Australia has donated AUD 2,000,000 (CHF 1,650,000) to the Doha Development Agenda Global Trust Fund at the WTO’s 9th Ministerial Conference in Bali in December 2013 as part of a multi-year commitment to the Fund. “We welcome Australia’s contributions, which will help developing and least-developed countries to seize opportunities arising from the multilateral trading system and better integrate into the world economy,” said WTO Director-General Roberto Azevêdo.
H.E. Dr. Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, President of the Republic Of Indonesia, opened the 9th Ministerial Conference in Bali, Indonesia on 3 December 2013 with a call for strong political will and more flexibility to close a Bali package. He told 125 trade ministers and close to 3,000 other delegates at the Bali Nusa Dua Convention Center that: “We have done much of the hard work. We are close to an historic achievement. Together, with our collective political will, let us seize this opportunity. This is our chance to rebuild the credibility and confidence to our precious trade negotiating forum.”
Liechtenstein has donated CHF 40,000 to the Doha Development Agenda Global Trust Fund for 2013. This contribution will finance a wide range of trade-related technical assistance activities to help developing countries and least-developed countries to build capacity and participate fully in the Doha Development Agenda.
The government of Sweden announced on 3 December 2013 the launch of a new trade facilitation training facility in Arusha, Tanzania. The Swedish government, through its development agency Sida, will provide an initial grant of approximately USD 1,600,000 (CHF 1,450,440) per year for 2014-2015.
The WTO Chairs Programme has extended to 8 December 2013 the deadline for submitting proposals for the second phase of the programme.
Trade Minister Gita Wirjawan, Chair of the 9th Ministerial Conference, and the three Vice Chairs, in a joint statement urged “all WTO Members to come together over the next few days to make the necessary breakthroughs, working closely with WTO Director General Roberto Azevêdo”.
After taking a hammering from banks' more attractive savings products, insurers are growing fast again. And their shares are cheap.
A number of WTO members support Azevêdo’s efforts to broker a successful outcome on the Bali Package
WTO Director General Roberto Azevêdo has welcomed a message of support issued Friday by a large number of developing and developed WTO members for a successful outcome to the 9th Ministerial Conference in Bali 3-6 December.
A five-agency programme has shown “impressive” and “highly relevant” results in helping developing countries meet international standards on food safety and animal and plant health, according to an independent review released to partners, donors and developing country experts on 29 November 2013.
France is donating CHF 615,000 (EUR 500,000) to the Doha Development Agenda Global Trust Fund for 2013 to finance technical assistance programmes and training activities for developing countries, least-developed countries (LDCs) and economies in transition. Another contribution of CHF 615,000 (EUR 500,000) will be allocated to the Internship Programme to build the expertise and capacity of developing countries in areas related to trade policy.