Even though the global economic crisis is far from over and may unfold in hitherto unexpected ways, the interests of developing countries, especially as they relate to the multilateral trading system, have definitely been implicated in ways that ought to force a rethink of national priorities. The purpose of this note is to identify a number of matters where crisis-related considerations should alter national calculations.
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When the WTO starts its work for 2009 this week, three items must be at the top of the agenda: debating the selection and mandate of the agency’s Director-General (Pascal Lamy’s current four-year term will expire this August); setting a date for a full Ministerial Conference this year in Geneva; and forging a forward-looking agenda for that meeting.