Friday, 31 October 2008 1:21 PM

Trade rules

The observations specifically made by Mr. Ian Kiloe on GATT/WTO rules are important and valid.

Indeed, the observation on whether or not international trading rules impinge on ability of sovereign states to legislate, regulate or set internal policies for the conservation and preservation of internal public interest constitute one of the many considerations that trade negotiators always bear in mind during negotiation processes.

Similarly, on Mr. Kiloe's observation that trade negotiations may be polarised and based on power play and the assymetric situation of super-heavies economies (EU, US etc.etc) versus developing and small economies, one can only say that that is dawning reality one is faced with.

The Doha Development Rounds was supposed and continues to represent an opportunity for the embracement of development dimension into the multilateral trading regime and its current state of play must be a concern. But one also needs not forget that under the existing GATT/WTO rules there of course exists numerous other exceptions for developing countries, although inadequate for the purposes they may be there to serve.

Lets face the facts and reality of the situation and therefore move on. And that is why we always say that we either join the bandwagon or get left behind, because no country exists as an island and interdependce within the global community/economy consitutes the way forward. This must stand true for trade relations be these bilateral, sub-regional, regional or multilateral.

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this letter/article are those of Joseph Ma'ahanua and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Solomon Times Online.

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