Day 4 of the Ministerial had many ups, downs and roundabouts. It ended with the release of a text on agriculture which maintains dumping, a green room on services from which the results are yet to be seen (article by Benny Kuruvilla), and a 6am deadline for members to submit proposals for final changes to the Ministerial Declaration. An earlier civil society meeting with the Venezuelan delegation revealed that they would not support negotiations on the controversial Annex C on Services, and would ‘walk out’ if negotiations proceeded on that basis.
The South African delegation called a symbolic meeting with civil society to similarly voice their opposition to Annex C and confirm their position that the Annex cannot be part of the final Ministerial Declaration. This position was supported in a joint letter to the Chairman by Venezuela and South Africa together with the Philippines, Indonesia and Cuba. In other developments all developing countries at the WTO (G20, G33, ACP, the LDCs, the African Group and the Small Economies) issued a joint statement declaring their shared interest in the development dimension of the Round and ‘their expectations for a comprehensive development outcome’. There will be tough negotiations tonight over Annex C and it is expected there will be extreme pressure placed on the G90 because of their alternative tabled text.
Where: Boys and Girls Club, 3 Lockhart Road, Wan Chai, Hong Kong When: 6pm
MEDIA RELEASE: THE DUMPING CONTINUES (RELEASED 11.45 PM, FRIDAY 16TH PM HONG KONG TIME)
ANALYSIS OF JUST RELEASED AGRICULTURE TEXT (Aileen Kwa)