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WTO disappointment

30 July 2008

WTO disappointment

Federated Farmers of New Zealand president Don Nicolson said food and fibre producers will be disappointed that the World Trade Organisation talks in Geneva have broken down before a final agreement was reached.

However, Mr Nicolson says he is encouraged that 18 of the 20 outstanding issues were agreed before the talks collapsed and he praised the efforts of the New Zealand delegation including Trade Minister, Phil Goff.

Mr Nicolson says he is hopeful that a final agreement can still be salvaged during the Doha Round.

"Federated Farmers sees the talks as crucial to future trade growth and market access. Improving the conditions of trade is vital to the international competitiveness and ongoing financial security of New Zealand farming, he said.

"The World Trade Organisation presents the best opportunity for New Zealand to secure concessions on improved market access, the elimination of export subsidies and the reduction of trade-distorting domestic support.

"If this trade agreement can been finalised it will mean huge benefits for New Zealand farmers and the greater New Zealand economy," said Mr Nicolson.

ENDS

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