Doha trade negotations collapse. Trying to make sense of international negotiations is near impossible, but it seems the failure to reach agreement is bad news for the developing world, particularly their farmers… It sounds like it’s a loss for Australia’s farmers as well, though the ones in the southern part of the country have of course got much bigger problems in the short term. — Larvatus Prodeo

After nine days, Pascal Lamy’s gamble has failed. At the outset, the likeliest stumbling block seemed to be America’s unwillingness to reduce the ceiling on its agricultural subsidies to somewhere close to the amount it actually spends… In the end, it was a dispute over protection for developing countries’ farmers that proved the deal-breaker. — The Economist

Neither a surprise nor a catastrophe. If trade negotiators want to take on well-entrenched interest groups, they have to find countervailing interest groups with an interest in liberalization. That never happened in this round; instead, we had a rather pathetic attempt to cast trade negotiations as, yes, part of the Global War on Terror. — Paul Krugman, NYT

The death of Doha. The forward motion on trade has ground to a halt, because most trade in goods and services has been liberalised in the Western world. The remaining issues are either sacred cows, like agriculture, or require much deeper integration of sensitive areas like finance and law. — The Atlantic


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Peter Fray
Peter Fray
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