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Statement by GTW Director Lori Wallach Upon the Conclusion of the Hong Kong Ministerial

Negotiators Put on Brave Faces as WTO Ministerial Collapse Is Narrowly Averted by Papering Over Divides, Punting Controversies Back to Geneva Retrograde Doha Agenda Steers Towards More-of-the-Same, while Decade of WTO’s Negative Results has Generated Intense Public Protest, Demand to Change Course

By Public Citizen's Global Trade Watch

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Negotiators’ attempts to characterize this summit as a success mainly reveals the vulnerability of the WTO process, given that the most significant deliverable here was simply avoiding collapse of yet another WTO summit. Only one out of dozens of outstanding substantive negotiating issues was resolved.

This text is really bad news for most people because instead of changing the existing WTO rules now causing serious damage, this text continues WTO talks on a course in which the options range only between gruesome and horrible.

It is not surprising that fudging the major outstanding differences was the only way to avoid another WTO summit collapse, given that it is many existing WTO terms and core elements of the Doha agenda, such as service sector privatization and deregulation, that many nations find unacceptable, not the language describing that agenda.