The all-party International Development Committee of the United Kingdom Parliament has issued a report on 27 April containing devastating criticisms of the European Union's positions in the current WTO negotiations.
Director-General Pascal Lamy, in his introductory statement to the Trade Negotiations Committee on 1 May 2006, said that finding consensus in the negotiations 'remains doable, but only if a sense of urgency-which I feel is not always shared by all-starts appearing in each and every delegation' 'We must now focus our efforts on working intensively, continuously and in an effective manner on a text-based negotiating process, which is solidly anchored in Geneva', he added.
The government decision to import 3.5 million tonne wheat for maintaining the buffer stock may soon prove to have been needlessly hasty as the stock in the central pool is already more than double the norm set for April.
India is unilaterally opening up its doors for imports of wheat at a time when the issues of special products (SPs), special safeguard mechanism (SSM), farm tariffs and bound rates and the role of state trading enterprises are not yet settled in the WTO.
World Trade Organization negotiators are seeking to rescue a global accord by setting a six-week timetable to cut import duties on commodities and industrial goods ranging from corn and computers to cars.