WTO: 2015 NEWS ITEMS

MINISTERIAL CONFERENCE, 10TH, NAIROBI


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Letter from President Kenyatta

Your Excellency,

In light of the ongoing celebrations for the 20th anniversary of the World Trade Organization (WTO), I would like to commend your commitment to integrating developing countries, in particular the least developed among them, into the multilateral trading system.

Turning to the current WTO negotiations, since September 2015 the focus has shifted to discussion of narrower, but still valuable, package built around specific elements of the Doha Development Round. While recognizing that members have different national priorities, nonetheless I continue to urge all members to demonstrate the necessary willingness, flexibility and pragmatism to find agreement.

Needless to say, international support is imperative for the success of the upcoming Tenth Ministerial Conference (MC10) in Nairobi, Kenya, on 15-18 December 2015. I believe MC10 will serve as the much needed collective effort to achieve consequential results which contribute to the future negotiating function of the WTO and delivering development outcomes for those members who need it most.

This Ministerial Conference will be the first to take place on African soil, a historic occasion, which will do much to help further integrate the African continent into the global trading system.

At this important moment in the negotiations, I would like to express my deep appreciation for your continuous effort to undertake a series of intensive consultations to identify different members' position on the elements of the "Nairobi Declaration". The objective is clearly towards finding a possible landing zone and working towards convergence on the issues on the table.

As the host of MC10, Kenya has done its upmost to ensure that the conference is a success. The recent meeting of African, Caribbean, and Pacific Group Trade Ministers in Brussels on 21 October 2015 reaffirmed the importance and our commitment for a meaningful outcome at MC10 in Nairobi.

Kenya believes that a fair, non-discriminatory, rules-based multilateral trading system is crucial for the global economy and achievement of sustainable development. As such, the success of MC10 in Nairobi is indeed critical to further restoring the credibility of the WTO and the multilateral trading system; which was able to deliver so successfully at the last Ministerial Conference in Bali, Indonesia, in 2013.

While we are still in the process of negotiating the outcomes for MC10, I commend your efforts to ensure that members do not forget those which we have already agreed on. The ratification, entry-into-force, and implementation of the Trade Facilitation Agreement will help to cut global trade costs as well as expediting the technical assistance that the Agreement provides for, including through the Trade Facilitation Agreement Facility.

Before concluding, I would like to kindly request your good offices forward this letter to all WTO members, to strongly encourage members to show their political will and necessary flexibilities in order to deliver a successful outcome at MC10.

Please accept, Excellency, the assurances of my highest regard.

PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC OF KENYA

H.E. M. UHURU KENYATTA

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