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Director-General Roberto AzevÍdo met with WTO members on 15 September to mark the beginning of a period of intensive and comprehensive consultations on how to make progress on all of the decisions and declarations agreed at the Bali Ministerial Conference and on the path forward concerning the remaining Doha Development Agenda issues. Next week, WTO members will meet informally to discuss the way forward.

The week ahead: 22 to 26 September 2014

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Briefing notes

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Director-General Roberto Azevêdo meets with members of the Brazilian Textile Industry Association on 22 September at the WTO. On 24 September, DG Azevêdo meets with Lenita Toivakka, Finland's Minister for European Affairs and Foreign Trade. On 25 September, he meets with Nyamjav Batbayar, Mongolia's Minister for Economic Development, and Otávio Brandelli, President of the Brazilian National Institute of Industrial Property. On the same day, DG Azevêdo gives the closing address at a WTO Seminar on Regional Trade Agreements.

WTO agriculture negotiators meet informally on 23 September to share their positions on the way ahead for the negotiations and the agreement in Bali to produce a work programme for completing the Doha Round (see the Ministerial Declaration, Part III, paragraph 1.11).

On 22 September, market access negotiators meet informally. On 23 September, WTO members meet informally as the Committee on Trade and Development to discuss the way ahead for the Monitoring Mechanism, a forum to monitor the special treatment for developing and least-developed countries.

On 24 and 26 September, Mongolia's trade policies and practices are up for review by its trading partners.

On 26 September, WTO members meet in the Dispute Settlement Body, which oversees disputes among WTO members. DG Azevêdo will address members at the meeting. The agenda also includes a request by the EU to establish a panel to look into Russia's measures on light commercial vehicles from Germany and Italy. On the same day, WTO members discuss Kazakhstan's WTO accession with a delegation from Astana.

 

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  The week in review: 15 to 19 September 2014

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Director-General Roberto Azevêdo launched intensive consultations on taking forward the results of the Bali Ministerial Conference at a meeting with WTO ambassadors on 15 September. The consultations will focus on how to progress all of the decisions and declarations agreed at the Bali Ministerial Conference and on the path forward concerning the remaining Doha Development Agenda issues.
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Chinese Taipei's trade policies and practices were reviewed on 16 and 18 September. Members applauded the response of Chinese Taipei's authorities to the global financial crisis and its success in maintaining export growth. They also commended Chinese Taipei on its efforts to diversify export markets, expand international trade, facilitate inward investment and overcome the heavy reliance on the information and communication technology sector. Members encouraged Chinese Taipei to expand the benefits of the Free Economic Pilot Zones across the territory and to simplify its tariff structure so as to help bring more predictability to trade and provide greater transparency for traders.
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The WTO launched the first of seven new participants in its Chairs Programme on 17 September. WTO Deputy Director-General Dave Shark participated at a ceremony at the North-West University of Potchefstroom, South Africa, to mark the event. He said that “academic institutions have helped the WTO raise awareness on trade issues and contributed to strengthening the knowledge base for effective decision-making”. The WTO will also be launching its Chairs Programme during the year in universities in Benin, Brazil, Indonesia, Oman, Tunisia and Turkey.
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At a Services Council meeting on 17 September, WTO members discussed a list of the services sectors in which least-developed countries (LDCs) would like to be treated more favourably. This follows a 2013 Bali Ministerial Conference decision  to make use of the waiver adopted in 2011. This mechanism allows WTO members to give preference to service providers from LDCs.

Services negotiators met informally on 19 September to discuss the way ahead in the negotiations, which are part of the Doha Round.

The Agriculture Committee met informally on 16 September. Members remained divided on how to proceed with work on agriculture under the 2013 Bali Ministerial Conference’s decision.
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  Other news in brief
 

The WTO circulated revised documents on members' use of export subsidies and other similar measures in the agriculture sector. (See G/AG/W/125/Rev.1 and G/AG/W/125/Add.3/Rev.1)