WASHINGTON, Dec. 8 (Xinhua) -- U.S. President Barack Obama on Sunday hailed the breakthrough in multilateral trade negotiations as global trade ministers gathered to reach a historical deal at the ninth ministerial meeting of the World Trade Organization's ( WTO) in Bali, Indonesia.
While expressing his welcome of the announcement of the first fully multilateral trade agreement in the history of the WTO, Obama said in a statement that the deal, particularly the new trade facilitation agreement, would "eliminate red tape and bureaucratic delay for goods shipped around the globe."
"Small businesses will be among the biggest winners, since they encounter the greatest difficulties in navigating the current system," he said.
Obama also said the WTO's Bali agreement represented "the rejuvenation of the multilateral trading system," and the global economic value of the new WTO deal could be worth hundreds of billions of dollars.
After more than a decade of negotiations and missed deadlines, the WTO finally achieved a breakthrough in its marathon trade- liberalization negotiations Saturday with a package consisting of 10 documents in the areas of trade facilitation, agriculture and development.