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WTO NEWS: 2002 PRESS RELEASES

Press/320
4 November 2002
TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE
Germany to contribute 1 million euros to the Doha Trust Fund

The German government today pledged a donation of 1 million euros (about CHF 1.45 million) over two years — 2003 and 2004 — to the WTO Doha Development Agenda Global Trust Fund. This pledge comes on top of approximately CHF 2 million already pledged by Germany for the period 2002-2005.

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German Ambassador Walter Lewalter and WTO Director General Supachai Panitchpakdi signed today a Memorandum of Understanding affirming this commitment.

“With this contribution we would like to continue and to enhance our support for the Doha Development Agenda,” Amb. Lewalter said. “Technical assistance should enable developing countries to be equal partners in the negotiations and improve their capacity in the field of international trade. We expect the technical assistance to be delivered in a highly effective and efficient manner”.

“I am especially grateful to Germany for its new generous contribution to the Doha Trust Fund,” said Director-General Supachai Panitchpakdi. “This donation will contribute actively to the establishment of a sound and predictable basis for funding WTO trade-related technical assistance as vouched for in the December 2001 decision by the WTO General Council. Germany’s contribution will help developing countries participate more fully in the Doha Development Round by building their capacities. This is crucial since the potential benefits of the Doha Round are enormous, especially in areas of particular interest to developing countries such as agriculture, fisheries, services and market access”.

The Doha Development Agenda Global Trust Fund was created following the WTO Ministerial Conference in Doha, in November 2001, which launched a new round of negotiations. On 11 March 2002 WTO Member Governments pledged CHF 30 million to the fund.