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Conclude Doha : it matters !

  • Hoekman, Bernard
  • Martin, Will
  • Mattoo, Aaditya

The Doha Round must be concluded not because it will produce dramatic liberalization but because it will create greater security of market access. Its conclusion would strengthen, symbolically and substantively, the WTO’s valuable role in restraining protectionism in the current downturn. What is on the table would constrain the scope for tariff protection in all goods, ban agricultural export subsidies in the industrial countries and sharply reduce the scope for distorting domestic support - by 70 per cent in the EU and 60 per cent in the US. Average farm tariffs that exporters face would fall to 12 per cent (from 14.5 per cent) and the tariffs on exports of manufactures to less than 2.5 per cent (from about 3 per cent). There are also environmental benefits to be captured, in particular disciplining the use of subsidies that encourage over-fishing and lowering tariffs on technologies that can help mitigate global warming. An agreement to facilitate trade by cutting red tape will further expand trade opportunities. Greater market access for the least-developed countries will result from the"duty free and quota free"proposal and their ability to take advantage of new opportunities will be enhanced by the Doha-related"aid for trade"initiative. Finally, concluding Doha would create space for multilateral cooperation on critical policy matters that lie outside the Doha Agenda, most urgently the trade policy implications of climate change mitigation.

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Paper provided by The World Bank in its series Policy Research Working Paper Series with number 5135.

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Date of creation: 01 Nov 2009
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Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:5135
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  1. Will Martin & Patrick Messerlin, 2007. "Why is it so difficult? Trade liberalization under the Doha Agenda," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 23(3), pages 347-366, Autumn.
  2. Yvan Decreux & Lionel Fontagné, 2011. "Economic Impact of Potential Outcome of the DDA," Working Papers 2011-23, CEPII research center.
  3. Bouet, Antoine & Laborde, David, 2008. "The potential cost of a failed Doha Round:," Issue briefs 56, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
  4. World Bank, 2007. "International trade and Climate Change : Economic, Legal, and Institutional Perspectives," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 6831, September.
  5. Gootiiz, Batshur & Mattoo, Aaditya, 2009. "Services in Doha : what's on the table ?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4903, The World Bank.
  6. Mitchell, Donald, 2008. "A note on rising food prices," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4682, The World Bank.
  7. Bouët Antoine & Laborde-Debucquet David & Dienesch Elisa & Elliott Kimberly, 2012. "The Costs and Benefits of Duty-Free, Quota-Free Market Access for Poor Countries: Who and What Matters," Journal of Globalization and Development, De Gruyter, vol. 3(1), pages 1-27, June.
  8. Jean, Sebastien & Laborde, David & Martin, Will, 2010. "Formulas and flexibility in trade negotiations : sensitive agricultural products in the WTO's Doha agenda," Policy Research Working Paper Series 5200, The World Bank.
  9. Bernard Hoekman & Alessandro Nicita, 2010. "Assessing the Doha Round: Market access, transactions costs and aid for trade facilitation," The Journal of International Trade & Economic Development, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 19(1), pages 65-79.
  10. Matthew Adler & Claire Brunel & Gary Clyde Hufbauer & Jeffrey J. Schott, 2009. "What’s on the Table? The Doha Round as of August 2009," Working Paper Series WP09-6, Peterson Institute for International Economics.
  11. Nogues, Julio J & Olechowski, Andrzej & Winters, L Alan, 1986. "The Extent of Nontariff Barriers to Industrial Countries' Imports," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 1(1), pages 181-99, September.
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