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WTO NEWS: 1998 PRESS RELEASES

PRESS/119
17 December 1998

Britain pledges to help developing world benefit from globalization

Britain and the World Trade Organization today signed an agreement to assist developing countries in participating more effectively in the international trading system.

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The agreement commits Britain to a contribution of ú660,000 to the WTO's 1999 Programme for Technical Cooperation. The contribution follows Prime Minister Tony Blair's announcement in May that Britain will contribute $10 million (ú6 million) to help developing countries participate in the multilateral trading system. That announcement came at a WTO meeting celebrating the 50th anniversary of the system.

The contribution will be used to help the WTO fund training and technical seminars designed to help developing countries better understand their rights and obligations under international trade agreements.

Mr. John Vereker, Permanent Secretary at Britain's Department for International Development (DFID), signed the Memorandum of Understanding with Mr. Renato Ruggiero, Director-General of the WTO in Geneva.