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“I don't have anything fundamentally new to tell you,” Ambassador Winzap told the meeting. “There are discussions, and homework is being done by members, but the situation is nonetheless still pretty much the same as I have put it to you in several reports over the last weeks.”

The Chairman also informed members that, although only one formal proposal had been submitted to date (i.e. the request/offer approach by Argentina), some  brainstorming had taken place on  alternative options. Acknowledging the importance of transparency for all members, the Chairman had listed those that he was aware of  but noted that several others were possible. These approaches, he noted, were based on some form of averaging (i.e. they are not applied on a line-by-line basis), and that some of them kept some form of a relationship to the application of the “Swiss formula” as  described in the latest version of the modalities (“Rev.3”). Several developing countries noted that they were not ready to consider any alternative approach unless it was submitted in writing by a member, as was required in other negotiating areas.  

At the meeting, many developing members continued to show reluctance to fully engage in NAMA discussions in the absence of clarity on the level of ambition in agriculture. Some expressed concern about a possible reduction in the level of ambition in agriculture and what they considered was the setting aside of fundamental concepts such as special and differential treatment for developing countries, less-than-full reciprocity in reduction commitments and, in general, other flexibilities for developing countries. Other members were concerned by the eventual reduction in the level of ambition and would like to stick to the latest version of the modalities, even if only as a benchmark.  The Chairman reminded members that all these flexibilities were still on the table and that no member had suggested that they would be left aside. He also said that the level of ambition in NAMA would be set by the agriculture negotiations.

The Chairman asked members to continue working and consider new ideas since work has to be done in all areas of the negotiations. “Yes, agriculture has not evolved, but it doesn't mean that nothing is happening anywhere else. The overall result needs to be balanced,” he said.

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