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U.S. Trade Representative Robert B. Zoellick in Geneva and Morocco, January 21-24

WASHINGTON - U.S. Trade Representative Robert B. Zoellick will be in Geneva for a day of meetings on January 21st at the World Trade Organization (WTO) to discuss moving forward on the negotiating agenda agreed to last November at the WTO Ministerial in Doha, Qatar. On January 22nd he will continue to Morocco for two days of discussions with King Mohamed VI and senior Moroccan officials on ways to strengthen U.S.-Moroccan economic ties.

While in Geneva, Zoellick will meet with WTO Director General Mike Moore, visiting trade ministers, and groups of Ambassadors from African nations, the ASEAN countries of south east Asia, and the Cairns Group of agricultural exporting nations.

"The United States played a leading role in the launch of new global trade negotiations. The new WTO negotiating mandate lays the groundwork for an ambitious trade liberalization agenda in key sectors, especially agriculture, manufacturing, and services," said Zoellick. "In 2002, we will press forward with these negotiations, advancing new and detailed proposals to open further the world's agriculture, services, and manufacturing markets."

"We will also place special emphasis on our continued effort to insure the involvement of developing nations, and build their capacity to participate in order to help them secure the benefits of trade and to keep all WTO members invested in the process," added Zoellick. "And we will work with the WTO and other international institutions to provide the tools and training needed to help these nations participate more actively in the global trading system. I look forward to meeting with our WTO partners to discuss our shared goals and to hear their views."

USTR to Visit Morocco, Meet with King Mohamed

In addition to meeting with King Mohamed VI, Ambassador Zoellick will meet with Fathallah Oualalou, Minister of Economy and Finance; Mustapha Mansouri, Minister of Commerce, Industry, Energy, and Mines; Ismail Alaoui, Minister of Agriculture; and Ministry of Foreign Affairs State Secretary Taieb Fassi Fehri.

"I am looking forward to my first trip to Morocco. King Mohamed has made economic reform and the establishment of a secure and attractive investment climate a priority of his Government," Zoellick said. "Morocco has been a strong supporter of the United States' fight against terrorism following the tragedies of September 11, and I look forward to discussing ways to deepen our economic relationship."

While in Rabat, Zoellick will meet with women recipients of micro-finance loans through a program funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID). He will also meet with American business leaders, members of Morocco's business community, and leading members of Moroccan civil society.

The United States conducts close to $1 billion in trade with Morocco. In 2000, the U.S. exported goods to Morocco totaling over $525 million, including aircraft, corn, wheat, soybeans, machinery and machine parts. U.S. imports from Morocco totaled $456 million.