Trade facilitation deal
WTO Director-General Pascal Lamy has said a trade facilitation deal could boost the global economy by more than US$1 trillion (€735 billion). During a speech to the Chittagong Chamber of Commerce in Bangladesh, Lamy said a multilateral trade facilitation agreement – the the current focus of the Doha WTO talks – would remove barriers to trade and cut red tape. WTO members this month begin talks on what agricultural elements are to be included in a potential ‘early harvest’ multilateral trade agreement, which it is hoped can be agreed at the 2013 Ministerial Conference in December. Lamy said border and customs procedures accounted for 10% of the $2 trillion costs of trading across borders and simply reducing this red tape would have the effect of removing all tariffs.