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More on technical assistance
WTO Director General Supachai Panitchpakdi and the Netherlands
Ambassador Ian de Jong signed the Memorandum of Understanding on the
contribution by the Netherlands on 19 November 2003.
The donation by the Netherlands Minister for Development Cooperation
will be used for negotiating capacity building and trade capacity
“I am extremely grateful to the Netherlands for contributing again to
the Doha Development Fund,” said WTO Director General Supachai
Panitchpakdi. “We can only reach a successful outcome to the Doha round
of negotiations with the full participation of all WTO Members.
Increasingly, developing countries are expressing the desire to
contribute more actively to the WTO debate. We can help them, through
technical assistance, equip themselves with the right tools to do so.”
Minister for Development Cooperation Agnes van Ardenne afterwards issued
the following statement in the Hague: “Technical assistance is urgently
needed to provide developing countries with sufficient knowledge on the
multilateral negotiation process and related issues. The failed Cancun
negotiations have taught us this. We have to enable developing countries
to bargain efficiently in the world trade process and to comply with the
The contribution will be made to the Doha Development Agenda Global
Trust Fund. This Fund was set up following the WTO Ministerial
Conference in Doha in November 2001 which launched a new round of
negotiations. Developing countries indicated more technical capacity was
needed in order to negotiate on an equal level with other countries.
They also asked for more assistance in order to comply with WTO
In December 2002, the General Council approved a target amount of 24
million Swiss francs for the Doha Trust Fund for 2003.