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New Zealand Joins DOHA Coalition In Support Of WTO

The Trade Liberalisation Network and Federated Farmers have joined with an international group of business and pro-WTO non-governmental organisations (NGOs) to form the Doha Coalition. The Coalition supports freer trade as a way of alleviating poverty and promoting sustainable economic growth.

“It’s high time that business and pro-trade NGOs reclaimed the moral high ground for trade”, said Trade Liberalisation Network Executive Director Stephen Jacobi from Doha. “Trade liberalisation is not an end in itself. It exists to provide opportunities for people. The launch in Doha of a new round of trade negotiations would be the single most effective step the international community could take at this time to address the problems in the world’s economy”.

Launched at the WTO Ministerial meeting in Doha, Qatar, the “Doha Coalition” comprises around 30 business associations and NGOs from around the world including the Australian APEC Centre, Melbourne and the International Policy Network, London.

Federated Farmers President Alistair Polson, also in Doha, said that New Zealand farmers understood the benefits of trade liberalisation and the importance of the WTO. “It amazes me that there can be such opposition to something so positive. The whole purpose of the WTO is to provide rules for international trade. Without the WTO there would be little chance for smaller countries to stop larger countries discriminating unfairly against them.”

The creation of the Doha Coalition is designed to support the process of trade negotiations in the WTO. “As the new round is launched Ministers and negotiators need to know that they have the support of business and NGOs”, concluded Mr Jacobi.

Ends

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