Monthly Archives: May 2004

Tax-breaks fracture FSC revision

Ed Feulner, president of the Heritage Foundation, “explains”:http://www.heritage.org/Press/Commentary/ed051004c.cfm why the Congress has so far failed to pass a law fixing the FSC export subsidies that the WTO found (twice) were illegal, risking an increase in sanctions already being applied by the EU. bq. There ought to be a law against such shenanigans. Unfortunately, we already […]

EU offer to eliminate export subsidies

The “announcement(AFP story, via Yahoo)”:http://story.news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story&cid=1518&ncid=1518&e=18&u=/afp/20040510/bs_afp/eu_wto_trade_farm_subsidies_040510123333 by the EU’s agriculture commissioner (Franz Fischler) that the Commission would propose to its Member States the elimination of six billion dollars in export subsidies seems to set the stage for agreement on agricultural reform in the Doha negotiations. It’s a dramatic move that encourages hope for renewed progress on […]

Update: more detail of the EC proposals

The text of the EC Trade Commissioner’s letter to Member States[⇒ related story] has now been released. In it Lamy explains the origins of the latest EC proposal. bq. It is clear that the objective of eliminating all forms of export subsidies is one which is shared by the great majority of participants. Before Cancun, […]

Update: EC’s market access claims

In his letter to Member States[⇒ related story], Pascal Lamy justifies the Commission’s call for a ‘blended formula’ for market access reforms in this way: bq. The average applied farm tariff in the EU is 10.5%, while Brazil’s tariff is 30% and the tariff among developing countries is 60%. Approaches on how to improve access […]

Poorest countries seek re-launch of WTO talks

The “news(link to BBC news report)”:http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/3688259.stm from the meeting of trade ministers of the “least-developed countries”:http://www.wto.org/english/thewto_e/whatis_e/tif_e/org7_e.htm in Dakar (Senegal) is that the group wants to see the Doha negotiations re-engage as soon as possible. But their willingness to make procedural concessions on the organization of talks doesn’t, unfortunately, add up to much progress on the […]

Buying your way out of a jam

Fascinating idea. Express tollway lanes that drivers may elect to use—at variable cost—to escape congestion. bq. The price would change with the degree of congestion, so that a premium is charged when the rest of the roadway is especially crowded but the toll drops as the highway empties. On State Road 91 in Southern California, […]

More on the FTA: the Intellectual Property provisions

“Kim Weatherall’s”:http://weatherall.blogspot.com/ detailed submission to the Joint Standing Committee on Treaties makes a compelling case that the provisions on term of copyright, anti-circumvention and ISP liabilities in the Free Trade Agreement are too prescriptive (leaving little room for Parliament to craft appropriate statutes), weighted too much to the interests of the rights owners and agreed […]