The collapse of the Doha round of negotiations at the World Trade organization is by any measure an unmitigated disaster for the poor and dispossessed of the planet.
Agricultural subsidies in the developed world are concrete overshoes for farmers and producers in the poorer developing world.
And who was the representative of the EU at these crucial talks? Who was it blaming everyone except himself so vigorously for the collapse? Peter Mandelson, the European Commissioner for Trade.
A man who had to resign twice from the British cabinet, and was subsequently kicked upstairs to the European Union by Tony Blair.
What on earth is Peter Mandelson's qualification for running anything? What has he ever achieved outside the black arts of spin.
Might the talks have succeeded with someone else in Mandelson's chair (Peter Sutherland for example)? We will never know. Blair won't give a monkey's because the failure of Doha won't really anger the voters, but I think it will emerge in time as a fairly inevitable result of one of his most cynical manoeuvres.
Wednesday, July 26, 2006
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