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27 February  2001
Letter from Director-General Mike Moore to Andean trade ministers

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Dear Ministers,

I take this opportunity to refer to the joint Declaration of Andean Trade Ministers to launch a new round of multilateral trade negotiations. I am in full agreement with you that multilateral trade liberalization has an enormous potential to lift people out of poverty and to increase the standard of living in all countries.

Your support comes at a critical juncture for the WTO. Over the past year, we have successfully rebuilt confidence in the WTO, but much remains to be done. Developing countries' difficulties in implementing the Uruguay Round agreements, as well as its perceived iniquities, remain one of our prime concerns. I share your view that more substantial reforms can best be achieved through new negotiations.

I am determined to ensure that trade liberalization efforts work towards development. Technical assistance efforts must be further enhanced to strengthen developing countries' capacities in making use of increased opportunities. Let me reiterate my conviction that developing countries have most to gain from further trade liberalization.

I am grateful for your strong encouragement of my work and the guidance you provide in the Declaration. I shall make every effort that the important issues you raise be fully taken into account in preparing for future multilateral trade negotiations.

Yours sincerely,

Mike Moore