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9th WTO Ministerial Conference kicks off in Bali

English.news.cn   2013-12-03 15:44:39            

BALI, Indonesia, Dec. 3 (Xinhua) -- The World Trade Organization (WTO) kicked off its 9th ministerial conference here Tuesday afternoon in the Indonesian resort island of Bali, struggling to revive the long-stalled Doha Round by reaching a possible trade deal at the four-day meeting.

Trade chiefs of the WTO's 159 members will work to break trade impasses and finalize a package of global trade agreements that mainly cover trade facilitation, development and agriculture, in a bid to pave the way for future completion of the Doha Round.

"It is our hope that over the course of the next few days ministers will be able to send a message to the world that the multilateral trading system still works," said Gita Wirjawan, chairman of the ministerial conference, at the opening session.

"We are on the cusp of an accomplishment that has eluded us for 12 long years," said Gita, who is also Indonesia's trade minister .

Firstly launched in 2001, the Doha Round of trade talks was launched by the WTO with an aim to help poor nations hurdle barriers in global trade and prosper through the free flow of goods.

In 2008, the Doha Round talks came to a stall over wide disparity in opinions on farm subsidies, tariffs, and non- agricultural market access between developed countries and developing ones, and little progress has been made at the WTO negotiation table ever since.

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