7th December 2013

Economic Policy: WTO reached first global trade deal

The World Trade Organization reached deal that could add $1 trillion to the global economy and create more than 20 million jobs, 18 million of them in developing nations. Deal marked end of 12 years of fruitless negotiations.  The deal would lower trade barriers and speed up the passage of goods through customs. Talks were held since Tuesday on the Indonesian island of Bali by nearly 160 ministers. At first, Cuba refused to accept a deal that would not help pry open the U.S. embargo of the Caribbean island, thus forcing negotiations to drag into Saturday morning. Further India insisted that it would back an agreement only if there was a exception on food subsidies because of its huge program for stockpiling food to feed its poor.  Both countries later agreed on compromise. The Bali accord will help revive confidence in the WTO's ability to negotiate global trade deals.

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Members of the American Chamber of Commerce in the Czech Republic