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NEW UPDATES Asean Affairs   6  August 2014  

European business concerned over WTO Members opening Pandora’s Box over Bali
The decision by the Indian government to seek to link the agreed implementation of the Bali agreement on trade facilitation to public food stockholding, days ahead of the 31 July deadline, risks opening Pandora’s box among Members of the World Trade Organisation (WTO).

“After more than a decade of fruitless negotiations, the Bali agreement gave the business community hope that the WTO can still deliver.  If now even this deal is brought into question, then we seriously run the risk of calling the grave-digger for further multilateral negotiations at the WTO,” said Arnaldo Abruzzini, Secretary General of EUROCHAMBRES.

The simplification and harmonisation of customs procedures through the WTO is a simple yet extremely efficient way for businesses worldwide to boost their economic performance in times of major challenges for the world economy.

The Bali deal on trade facilitation, which WTO members agreed upon last December after long and intensive negotiations, delivered a balanced result between the interests of developed and developing countries, including least developed ones.

EUROCHAMBRES therefore keeps encouraging all parties to make the necessary efforts to help bring the agreed outcomes to a successful conclusion.

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This year in Thailand-what next?

AseanAffairs   04 January 2011
By David Swartzentruber      

It is commonplace in journalism to write two types of articles at the transition point between the year that has passed and the New Year. As this writer qualifies as an “old hand” in observing Thailand with a track record dating back 14 years, it is time take a shot at what may unfold in Thailand in 2011.

The first issue that can’t be answered is the health of Thailand’s beloved King Bhumibol, who is now 83 years old. He is the world's longest reigning monarch, but elaborate birthday celebrations in December failed to mask concern over his health. More






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