Stuart Harbinson was appointed to be the WTO Director General’s Chief of Staff in June, before the Cancún meeting. His statement makes it look like he is simply fed-up with the lack of real engagement on agricultural reform. bq. “Chairing the agriculture negotiations has been extremely challenging and rewarding. In practice it has been possible to combine the chairmanship with my other duties. However, we are now entering a new phase in the agriculture negotiations and I think a new chairperson may be better able to bring the fresh perspective which we now need. I believe I did what I had to do as chairman over the past 18 months given the mandate issued by Ministers at the 2001 Doha Ministerial Conference. I have no regrets but it is now time for someone else to take up the banner,” he said.
Peter Gallagher is student of piano and photography. He was formerly a senior trade official of the Australian government. For some years after leaving government, he consulted to international organizations, governments and business groups on trade and public policy.
He teaches graduate classes at the University of Adelaide on trade research methods and the role of firms in trade and growth and tweets trade (and other) stuff from @pwgallagher