January 28, 2020

Doha Talks: Commerce Sec. Gutierrez Leans on Brazil

Reuters writer Doug Palmer reported yesterday that, “The United States recognizes agriculture is the central issue for developing countries in the nearly 6-year-old world trade talks, Peter Allgeier, the U.S. ambassador to the World Trade Organization, said in Geneva…But refusing to negotiate seriously on manufacturing and services trade liberalization until ‘the dust has settled on agriculture … is a formula for failure,’ Allgeier said.”

I. Doha
II. Farm Bill
III. Biofuels

I. Doha

Reuters writer Todd Benson reported yesterday that, “The United States urged Brazil on Wednesday to use its influence with developing nations to ensure that the long-running Doha round of global trade talks do not end in a stalemate.

“The appeal came a day after Washington said tough demands made by developing nations could derail the talks, launched nearly six years ago to lift millions out of poverty and boost the global economy by opening up world trade. (Right: Lauren Etter reported in today’s Wall Street Journal that, “The stalling ethanol industry wants Congress to mandate greater use of the biofuel.” (from The Wall Street Journal Online)).

“‘It’s time now for Brazil … to use the significant influence that it has around the world,’ U.S. Commerce Secretary Carlos Gutierrez said at an event with business leaders in Sao Paulo, Brazil’s financial capital.” [A complete transcript of the remarks delivered by Sec. Gutierrez can be found here].

“‘Brazil can persuade other advanced developing countries,’ he added. ‘To the extent that Brazil shows support and publicly states its support for the WTO agreement, and where it’s going, and what they’re negotiating this week in Geneva, that will have an impact on other developing economies.’”