|Author (Person)||Taylor, Simon|
|Series Title||European Voice|
|Series Details||Vol 7, No.4, 25.1.01, p5|
THE European Commission is optimistic about wrapping up a deal on admitting China to the World Trade Organisation (WTO) in March provided a range of problems on services can be resolved.
Officials say despite disagreements among China, the US and Canada over Beijing's demand to be able to increase subsidies to its farm sector last week WTO members had come "closer than ever" to reaching a consensus.
"The amount of outstanding issues has been ring-fenced," said one WTO expert. "We expect that when the next working party meets in March they will be able to wrap it up."
Apart from the differences over farm subsidies, Commission experts say the main obstacles to a deal are Beijing's terms for allowing foreign services firms to operate in the country. The EU and its WTO partners want clearer definitions of the scope of operations for brokers and of franchising rules. They also want more information on types of insurance risk and guarantees that foreign firms would be free to choose a partner in compulsory joint venture projects.
China has been negotiating terms of entry to the trade-rules body since it struck a deal with the US in November 1999 and the EU in May 2000. Talks stalled last week after China insisted on the right to increase farm subsidies to the maximum level allowed for developing countries.
The European Commission is optimistic about wrapping up a deal on admitting China to the World Trade Organisation in March 2001 provided a range of problems on services can be resolved.
|Countries / Regions||China|