Comment by Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi on the Suspension of the WTO Doha Development Agenda Negotiations

August 1, 2006

  1. It is extremely disappointing that the Doha Round negotiations were suspended as a result of the inability to bridge the gap in negotiating positions. This is in spite of the utmost efforts thus far by WTO Members to reach an agreement.
  2. The suspension is an unfavorable result not only for Japan but for all WTO Members who support and reap the benefits of the multilateral trading system. It is a matter of concern should world economy growth through trade increase stall. In particular, it is a blow for developing countries that the prospect for conclusion of the negotiations by the end of the year has now become remote. This is in light of the current Round's strong emphasis on benefiting developing countries, especially the LDCs.
  3. Japan will provide its utmost efforts towards the early resumption of negotiations, and is committed to setting the negotiations back on track to realize the early conclusion of the Round.
  4. The significance of development through trade does not dwindle as a result of the suspension. Regardless of the suspension, Japan will steadily implement its Development Initiative for Trade that it announced on the occasion of the WTO Hong Kong Ministerial Conference.
  5. Furthermore, Japan will continue to pursue steady progress in the two axes, the WTO and the EPA/FTAs, the former maintaining and strengthening the multilateral trading system while the latter complementing this process.
  6. Japan will continue to pursue vigorously its agricultural policy reform from the viewpoint of "proactive agricultural policy", with an aim to strengthen the viability of the domestic agricultural sector, as well as to establish strategies toward globalization.

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