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Ministerial Conference - Ninth Session - Bali, 3 - 6 December 2013 - Statement by H.E. Mr Nam Viyaketh - Minister of Industry and Commerce - Lao People's Democratic Republic
作者:Lao People's Democratic Republic

Statement by H.E. Mr NAM VIYAKETH


Lao People's Democratic Republic

It is my great pleasure to attend the 9th WTO Ministerial Conference. As our Director General Roberto Azevêdo has mentioned, this is the first Ministerial Conference Lao PDR is attending as a member of this Organization – and we do hope and expect to attend a meaningful meeting On behalf of the Lao delegation, I would like to extend my deepest thanks to the authorities and the people of Indonesia for the warm welcome we have received in this wonderful setting; as well as to the WTO secretariat for the excellent organization of this meeting.


Special thanks and our admiration go to our new DG, who has led this final negotiation for Bali with a lot of enthusiasm and skills.  Your leadership has reinvigorated the negotiations. You have been able to restore a sense of common purpose, a willingness to cooperate, to find solutions rather than to enumerate problems. The spirit of an inclusive multilateral cooperation was borne again.  Unfortunately, we have not yet been able to harvest the fruits of this new spirit. But we all will not give up; we have come too far to abandon now; we will prevail and save the system that has so well served us.


Even though we do not have a consensus on the package before us, we do have a negotiated package. Like many of us, Lao PDR is not satisfied with all that has been agreed upon. Like many of our colleagues we hoped for more in Bali. However, let’s not forget that this is not the final deal, but a first step towards a more comprehensive multilateral deal. We have to show the world that this institution is able to agree on some elements to keep the multilateral system alive. For the sake of the survival of an inclusive multilateral system, I urge all members to make their utmost to conclude this package and to let us go on with our main business of establishing a fair, open, rules-based and inclusive multilateral trading system. Our citizen, wherever they are, want jobs and development. We all know that this requires a functioning multilateral trading system. Let us not disappoint them.


We want to concentrate on the way forward. The Bali package is a necessary step, but it is not enough to reinvigorate the negotiations on its own. We have to reinvent the way we are negotiating so as to be more efficient, to increase our chances to come to consensus decisions in a reasonable amount of time.


Let’s work together on a roadmap to finish this Round that has lasted much too long. Lao PDR is ready and willing to consider any proposals to increase the efficiency of the negotiation process as long as they do not put into jeopardy the Development Agenda. We also ask our colleagues to commit themselves unequivocally to respect the inclusiveness of the multilateral system. This does not mean that we question the rights of members who are willing to go beyond what can be achieved within the inclusive system. However, those efforts should respect the basic framework and principles of WTO and not lead either to a modification of the objectives agreed upon multilaterally or to the marginalization of the poorer developing countries.


It is up to us, the Ministers, to give the necessary impulse to define a credible way forward that convinces all parties that the Doha Round can be finished successfully. The future of the inclusive multilateral system is at stake unless we can overcome the basic obstacles that prevent us from reaching agreement on an inclusive multilateral system.  We therefore believe that the future work program should contain two major parts:


·      A time limited  work program outlining the negotiating process on the issues members have taken decisions on here in Bali or where the decisions have been postponed for after Bali;


·      A decision to address the underlying issues which have prevented us from coming to an agreement on the Doha Development Agenda and a mandate to the institution to come up with a new way of negotiation ready for adoption at the next Ministerial Meeting. It is our believe that only a deep reform on how we work, a new consensus about the rights and obligations of all parties, an open discussion on how mega-deals and plurilaterals may affect positively or negatively the inclusive multilateral system will allow us to find a new consensus on how the multilateral trade framework should be established and how it should work to the benefit of all WTO members whether big or small, rich or poor, developed or in development.


I am confident that such a consensus can be reached; that such a consensus will lead to an agreement on the development agenda and the reinvigoration of our transparent and equitable multilateral trading system.


In closing, I would like to extend a warm welcome to the Republic of Yemen as new member of the WTO.