WTO talks on track again?

HARD BARGAINING between five core members of the World Trade Organisation has resulted in an accord that could open the way to a fullblown trade deal, Reuters reports.

A negotiator told Reuters that the accord “brings the possibility of an agreement [of the full WTO membership] nearer”.

The organisation has set a deadline of midnight on Friday (July 30) to achieve outline deals in four areas: agricultural and industrial goods, services and a new customs code.

The five members who have reached the preliminary accord are the United States, the European Union, Australia, India and Brazil.

The agreement they have reached concerns the wording of  all points in the hotly disputed text on agricultural reform, widely seen as crucial to an overall pact.

The current talks are intended to put the troubled Doha Round of free trade negotiations back on track.

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