21 November 2003

Supachai welcomes support from Leaders of IMF and World Bank

WTO Director-General Supachai Panitchpakdi welcomed today the strong support shown by International Monetary Fund Managing Director Horst Köhler and World Bank President James D. Wolfensohn who sent a joint letter to global leaders encouraging them to redouble their efforts in advancing the Doha Development Agenda global trade talks.

In their 11 November letter, Mr. Köhler and Mr. Wolfensohn urged Heads of State and Government to consider both the potential benefits of a successful outcome to the negotiations and the negative consequences of continued stalemate.

“I welcome the letter sent today by my colleagues, Horst Köhler and James Wolfensohn, to all Heads of State and their economic Ministers, urging them to engage and move forward again with the Doha Development Agenda. I agree with them entirely on the importance of this issue and on the potential ramifications for the global economy if we collectively fail to advance the talks,” said Director-General Supachai. “The strong show of support from Managing Director Köhler and President Wolfensohn is another example of the close cooperation we have established between our organizations. I join their call for our member governments to take full advantage of the opportunities of more open trade and I appreciate their offer to assist developing-country governments in managing the risks associated with economic reform. Their initiative can make an important contribution to the successful conclusion and implementation of the Doha negotiations.”