July 18, 2011
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Trade Representative Ronald Kirk announced today that the United States will contribute $1.2 million for trade-related technical assistance (TRTA) to the World Trade Organization (WTO). The WTO’s TRTA program provides training for developing countries that enhances their ability to analyze issues, assess their interests and participate effectively in the negotiations and other WTO activities. The program also provides these nations with assistance in meeting their WTO obligations and ensures they fully benefit from the results of being a WTO Member.
“The United States is committed to work with developing countries as partners in the global trading system. This contribution reflects our commitment to ensuring that developing countries can participate effectively in all the activities of the WTO, including the Doha Round of world trade negotiations, and to ensure that they enjoy the benefits of being WTO Members” Ambassador Kirk said. “We continue to believe that working through the WTO to create meaningful new opportunities for farmers, manufacturers and service providers will help these countries meet their development objectives and improve the well being of their people.”
The U.S. contribution, which was approved by Congress, will be part of a technical assistance fund that developing nations can use for assistance in analyzing issues, assessing individual country interests, and meeting their WTO obligations. This latest contribution will bring total U.S. trade assistance for the Doha Development Agenda to almost $11 million since the launch of negotiations in November 2001.
The United States’ contribution to the WTO was appropriated by Congress as part of the funds it provides to the U.S. Department State for voluntary contributions to international organizations. It is just one part of much broader U.S. assistance efforts. Overall U.S. support for trade capacity building (or “aid for trade”) since the Doha Round began in 2001, has now surpassed $11 billion.