The Doha Round of talks has been experiencing difficulty in reaching a new World Trade Organization (WTO) agreement to replace the former General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) that ended in 2003.

At the Fourth Ministerial Conference in Doha, Qatar, in November 2001, WTO member governments agreed to launch new negotiations. They also agreed to work on the implementation of the present agreements. The entire package is called the Doha Development Agenda.

Canada and 148 members of the WTO have been meeting periodically since 2001 in order to advance negotiations, and have failed to reach an agreement.

Pascal Lamy, the director general of the World Trade Organization (WTO), has called a week-long meeting of ministers starting July 21, 2008, aimed at reaching a deal on liberalizing global trade.

The WTO Negotiating Group for Trade Facilitation meetings focus on border-related rules and procedures, and in Canada, the Department of Foreign Affairs has requested comments from Canada Border Services Agency stakeholders on the current WTO proposals.

Parties with an interest in issues such as customs fees and procedures, transshipment, access to foreign trade regulations, and sharing of export information by customs administrations, are invited to submit comments on proposals currently under discussion by the WTO.

To submit comments, please contact our technical consulting group, or visit the following website: