Schwab Announces U.S. Contribution to WTO Technical Assistance Efforts
WASHINGTON DC – U.S. Trade Representative Susan C. Schwab announced today that the United States intends to contribute $940,000 for trade-related technical assistance (TRTA) to the World Trade Organization (WTO). This latest contribution would bring total U.S. contributions to WTO TRTA for the Doha Development Agenda to almost $7 million since the launch of negotiations in November 2001 and is part of the U.S. commitment to the Aid for Trade initiative.
“At this crucial phase of the Doha negotiations, this contribution reflects our strong commitment to provide assistance to developing countries to help them participate in the negotiations and benefit from the results,” said Schwab. “We can realize the full development potential of the negotiations only through an ambitious outcome - and we will work with all WTO Members, but particularly developing country Members, to meet this objective.”
The WTO’s technical assistance program provides training to help developing countries by enhancing their ability to analyze issues, assess their interests, and participate effectively in the negotiations. It also assists developing countries in meeting their WTO obligations and benefiting from the results of WTO negotiations.
The U.S. contribution to the WTO was appropriated by Congress as part of the funds it provides to the State Department for voluntary contributions to international organizations. It is just one part of much broader U.S. assistance efforts. The United States is the largest single country donor of trade capacity building assistance. At the Hong Kong Ministerial Conference, the United States pledged to double trade capacity building support to $2.7 billion by 2010. Total United States funding for trade capacity building activities in FY2006 was approximately $1.4 billion, up from almost $640 million in FY2002.