report (TN/CTD/3) recommends that the General Council agree to set up
a “Monitoring Mechanism” for special and differential treatment
— the term used in the WTO for provisions that take the special
situation of developing countries into account, and an issue that many
developing country member governments consider to be a priority.
Details would then be worked out by the Trade and Development
Committee, which consists of all WTO members, in its “Special
Sessions” — the official name for meetings dealing with
negotiations and a number of other items on the Doha agenda.
report also includes a summary of the discussions so far, with over 80
proposals tabled. And it includes a work plan (the “Way Forward”)
for the coming months. It recommends that the General Council approve
extending until 31 December 2002 the deadline for “clear
recommendations for decision”.
WTO ministers had instructed the committee to make the recommendations
to the WTO General Council by 31 July.
mandate and explanation:
Declaration > explanation
decision > explanation
over 80 proposals have been submitted, the committee concluded that
more time is needed.
Ministers mandated the CTD to ‘report to the General Council with
clear recommendations for a decision by July 2002’,” the report
says. “A large number of issues, including some that are complex,
have been raised, both in the written submissions and the ensuing
discussions, and while some recommendations can be made, a significant
amount of work remains to be done before Members can agree on clear
recommendations in a number of areas, in accordance with the
on this new deadline was one of the more difficult questions that the
committee faced in preparing its report to the General Council. A
number of developing countries felt that 31 December was the
latest date they could accept. Some developed countries said the
number of proposals to be examined would require work at least until
31 March 2003.
chairperson Ransford Smith, the Jamaican ambassador, paid tribute to
the “compromise and goodwill that were indispensable for us to be
able to arrive at agreement on this text”. He reminded delegates
that much difficult work remains to be done.
addition to the question of dates, possible links between special and
differential treatment under specific agreements and those that cut
across all issues were also debated.
Smith told delegates he believes the compromise text “preserves the
various positions expressed by members who … wish to make cross
linkages between the two areas of work, and to make inputs from one to
the other as they consider appropriate”.
statement to the committee
thank all members for showing the compromise and goodwill that were
indispensable for us to be able to arrive at agreement on this text.
has not been an easy exercise, but neither was it an easy task. And we
must bear in mind that much difficult work remains to be done, for our
work is not complete. It is nevertheless very important that we have
been able to agree on the recommendations that are reflected in (the
section on) the Way Forward. It suggests that with hard work and
goodwill we should be able to move forward after the summer break to
meet the deadline we have set.
say this bearing in mind of course that at this point we are making
recommendations, not taking decisions. The General Council will have
to consider and take action on our report on 31 July 2002.
wish to comment on two of the very difficult issues we faced in
preparing and agreeing on our report. One is the relationship between
the work to be carried out under paragraph 15 on agreement on
specific proposals and paragraph 16 on cross cutting issues. The
Chair is of the view that the manner in which the paragraphs now
appear preserves the various positions expressed by members on that
relationship. It also preserves the opportunity for members who so
wish to make cross linkages between the two areas of work and to make
inputs from one to the other as they consider appropriate.
in relation to the deadline of paragraph 14, I recognize that
some delegations strongly felt that the new deadline at the end of the
year was impossible to meet. I realize that it is only in the spirit
of achieving the necessary consensus in order to continue our work,
that these members went along with the end of December 2002
deadline. These members have also expressed the view that they believe
that the results achievable by the end of 2002 had to be assessed
in the light of these views on the deadline.
delegations expressed their disappointment that the July 2002
deadline was not adhered to, given the importance they attach to this
deadline in the overall process agreed to in Doha. However, I
understand that the same delegations are willing to agree to a new
deadline of 31 December 2002, as they see it as an
appropriate and reasonable extension.
me conclude by saying that while we have agreed on the “Way
Forward”, it will be necessary for us to agree on a detailed work
plan. In such a work plan we should structure our work in a manner
that is faithful to our mandate and to the elements we have agreed in
the “Way Forward”. A detailed work plan will also allow us to
organize our work in an optimal way, bearing in mind the deadline we
have now set. We should turn our attention to this as a matter of
priority immediately after the summer break.
me once again thank all members for the goodwill they have shown. Our
report and its recommendations will be transmitted to the General
Council for consideration on 31 July 2002.