WTO. G10 vil bidra men krever fleksibilitet

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Ministre fra G10-landene møttes i forkant av åpningen av WTOs ministerkonferanse i Hong Kong tirsdag. I en felles pressemelding understreker ministrene at G10-landene vil bidra til å fullføre forhandlingene i løpet av 2006, men understreker samtidig blant annet nødvendigheten av fleksibilitet for å ivareta de ikke-økonomiske hensyn som landbruket ivaretar. (14.12)

G10 1Iceland, Israel, Japan, Korea, Liechtenstein, Mauritius, Norway, Switzerland, Chinese Taipei. Press Release
Hong Kong, 13 December 2005

1. Ministers of the G10, a group of major food importing WTO Members, reiterated their determination to expeditiously elaborate mutually acceptable modalities for further agricultural reform in order to successfully conclude the DDA in 2006. Therefore, with a view to achieving this objective and preparing the ground for fully-fledged modalities, G10 Ministers urge Members to focus their discussions in Hong Kong on the “structural elements” of the three pillars under negotiation.

2. G10 Ministers emphasised that all sensitivities and Non Trade Concerns shall be taken into account. S&D for developing Members is an integral part of the negotiations, and the issues concerning long-standing preferences and recently acceded Members should be addressed adequately.

3. G10 Ministers highlighted that it is imperative to put together a tangible package of results in the development issues at the Hong Kong Ministerial Conference. Especially, results on issues of particular interest to LDCs should be implemented as an early harvest. Moreover, the crucial issues raised by the Cotton Initiative shall be dealt with substantively with a view to harnessing trade for development. Ministers also welcomed a proposal on SPs and the SSM recently submitted by a group of developing countries.

4. Recalling the various contributions they already submitted to the negotiations, G10 Ministers agreed on the following points:

- In the market access pillar, it is essential to deepen the discussions on the treatment of sensitive products, special products (SPs), the Special Safeguard Clause (SSG) and the Special Safeguard Mechanism (SSM). Having a clearer picture of these elements is, together with consideration for the flexibility needed to address different tariff structures, the only way forward to achieve convergence on the parameters of the Tiered Formula.

- Parallelism on export competition should be clearly defined in order to set an end date for the elimination of all forms of export subsidies.

- The integrity of the Green Box as an essential tool to address Non Trade Concerns and facilitate the ongoing reform process should be preserved. The criteria for the new Blue Box should be equally strict as those for the existing Blue Box. Moreover some G10 Members (Japan, Iceland, Norway and Switzerland) are ready to make an additional effort in AMS reduction as part of an overall balanced agreement.

- The G10 is willing to engage in constructive discussions in all three pillars under negotiation and will, in due time, submit new proposals on outstanding issues which are paramount to advance negotiations, bearing in mind the need for flexibilities of a large number of Members.

5. Ministers underscored the necessity to ensure the inclusiveness and transparency of the negotiations. Political ownership of the process and outcome of the negotiations is a prerequisite to the successful conclusion of the DDA.