From Wed Mar 20 07:15:08 2002
Date: Tue, 19 Mar 2002 15:42:12 -0600 (CST)
Subject: [bridges] BRIDGES Weekly Trade News Digest Vol. 6, Number 10
Article: 135175
To: undisclosed-recipients:;

Philippines Mulls Withdrawal From WTO, Cairns

Bridges, Vol. 6 no. 10, 19 March 2002

Philippine Trade Secretary Manuel Roxas on 15 March said the country was considering withdrawing from the WTO over what he claims is the trade body's discrimination between its developed and developing country Members.

The Trade Secretary also cited the recent decision by the US to impose tariffs of up to 30 percent on imported steel and the EU's preference to import tuna from Africa and the Caribbean over the Philippines.

Earlier, on 13 March, Philippine President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo voiced her support for calls for the country to reconsider its membership in the Cairns Group, a coalition of 18 agricultural exporting countries. Some members of Arroyo's cabinet, particularly Trade Secretary Manuel Roxas, have urged the withdrawal from Cairns due to the group's failure to back the country's bid to access the European tuna market.

The Philippines has been seeking better access for its tuna in the European market and has complained of tariff barriers.


Philippines reviewing its membership in WTO, RADIO AUSTRALIA NEWS, 15 March 2002;

Pres Arroyo Backs Philippines Withdrawal from Cairns Grp, DOW JONES, 13 March 2002.