Amorim rebuts criticism by US Trade Representative

22/09/2003 - 22h28

Brasília, 9/23/2003 (Agência Brasil - ABr) - In response to an article in the "Financial Times," on Monday, in which US Trade Representative, Robert Zoellick, blamed Brazil for causing difficulties in the negotiations at the V Ministerial Meeting of the World Trade Organization in Cancun, Mexico, minister of Foreign Relations, Celso Amorim, rebutted the criticism.

Saying that it might be a good idea to try find out who was to blame for the Cancun failure, Amorim pointed out that Brazil joined other countries in demanding more liberalization of trade and an end to farm subsidies. The minister said that the fact that Brazil was cited 5 times in the Zoellick article was a sign that Brazilian participation at the meeting had been effective.

That certainly seemed to be the case when Zoellick, speaking at the end of the meeting, praised Brazil and the G-20 for being pragmatic. Amorim said the article was a case of the American doing some backpedalling, after all both Brazil and the US are supposed to be in favor of expanding free trade.

Amorim concluded by saying that Brazil remains committed to seeking a consensus on trade problems and determined to move ahead with further negotiations at the WTO. (AB)