Draft Paper – Not to be cited without author’s permission
2001—The WTO Doha Ministerial
The 4th WTO Ministerial was held in 2001 in the Persian Gulf State of Qatar—a country
that does not allow significant public protest or demonstrations.
negotiators reached no specific
agreements, though the this new “Development
start of the “Doha Round” the South
again the round” of agreed to
consider adding “new issues” to the WTO agenda—expanding its trade related topics—in exchange for the North agreeing that the
mandate to less directly WTO should give more
attention to the concerns of the South that trade liberalization as practiced already damaging their national economies (i.e. there should be more options and differential” treatment for poor countries).
far was “special
2002—FTAA Negotiations in Quito
Between Doha and the 5th Ministerial, held in Cancún, Mexico in September 2003, no significant progress was made in negotiating any outstanding issues, not in the WTO nor in the other major forum of trade negotiations, the proposed Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA). In 2002 in Quito, Ecuador, agricultural trade issues, accompanied by massive street protests by organizations of farmers and indigenous people, blocked significant advances in negotiations toward the FTAA. After failing to reach agreement with Latin American trade ministers in Quito, U.S. Trade Representative Robert Zoellick said that if the USA could not get what it needed from the FTAA negotiations, it would get it in the WTO. 54
2003—The WTO Cancún Ministerial
Yet the Cancún WTO Ministerial collapsed just like Seattle, again stumbling over agriculture and again marked by massive street protests and the self-immolation at the
barricades of Korean farm leader Mr. Lee Kyung-Hae.55 emergence of new Southern country negotiating blocs, most countries with large agroexport potential, and the G-33 and Third World nations.
Cancún also marked the famously the G-20 group of G-90 blocs of less powerful
2003—Scaling back the FTAA in Miami
Following a scant two months after Cancún, widespread intransigence by Latin American governments, mostly around agriculture, essentially brought the FTAA as previously conceived to a halt. In a face-saving move, the US was forced to go along with heavily scaled-back plans for what the international media quickly called “FTAA-lite.” 56
2003-2004: A wave of smaller trade agreements
At the end of the Cancun meeting, Mr. Zoellick presaged the next stage of trade negotiations, when he said that “the key division at Cancun was between the can-do and the won't-do [countries]. For over two years, the U.S. has pushed to open markets globally, in our hemisphere, and with sub-regions or individual countries. As WTO