Dodwell in SOM 2 Meetings at Kazan - Post 4

May 29, 2012

After several days of discussion here in Kazan on the importance of services in all of our economies, and the need for – and value of – services liberalization, there was some dismay on Monday to discover that the draft statement of Ministers Responsible for Trade (MRT) made the vaguest passing reference to services and services liberalization, and similarly little reference to investment liberalization. As a result, some urgent informal advocacy was cranked up to press our Trade Ministers to pay services and investment a little more attention.

As I speak, the draft is being tweaked, hopefully with positive results, with ABAC members and Ed Pedrosa from the Pacific Economic Cooperation Council (PECC) busy interceding with a number of senior trade officials. After spending such a large amount of time and effort since our “Understanding Services” report last summer emphasizing the importance of services liberalization, it is a telling reminder of how much work still needs to be done to raise broader awareness, and reduce anxieties among some member economies about the importance and advantages of services and investment liberalization.

* Read Dodwell's other posts from Kazan.


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