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WTO Making Progress In Duty-Free Market Access For LDCs

by Mike Godfrey, Tax-News.com, Washington

19 February 2015


The Director-General of the World Trade Organization (WTO), Roberto Azevêdo, has said that "good progress" is being made towards the implementation of specific measures for least developed countries (LDCs) agreed at the Ninth Ministerial Conference in Bali, including the increased provision of duty-free quota-free (DFQF) market access.

Most developed countries and some developing countries already provide a significant degree of DFQF market access to products from LDCs. At the Bali conference in 2013, those advanced nations that had yet to provide DFQF access to at least 97 percent of LDCs' exports committed to improve their existing DFQF coverage for LDCs by December. Developing countries were also encouraged to provide DFQF access.

Azevêdo said that "solid progress" on DFQF market access was made in 2014. "There were welcome announcements from Chile, India, and China. The Committee on Trade and Development's annual review revealed that exceptions to DFQF treatment remain in a small number of sectors and in a very limited number of developed markets," he said.

The Director-General also noted that progress is being made on implementing the WTO's Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA). He called on members to ratify the agreement as soon as possible.

TAGS: tax | Chile | India | World Trade Organisation (WTO) | China | import duty | trade

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