Saturday, November 12, 2005

The West preaches to the rest

Ninan starts his great article with:

It is the privilege of the rich and the powerful to preach to others -- without having to bother about whether they are delivering what they ask others to do.

How true! Ninan chides John Snow, the US Treasury Secretary who asked for further opening up of our financial sector, by recounting all the entry barriers faced by Indian bankers who want to set up a branch office in the US.

In this editorial, the New York Times notes the appalling behaviour of the US, Europe and Japan in the realm of farm subisdies.

For the last half-century, the World Trade Organization and its predecessor, the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade, have aggressively dismantled barriers against trade in industrial goods and services, areas in which rich countries in Europe, along with the United States and Japan, hold a comparative advantage. But when it comes to areas where poor countries could flourish, like textiles and agriculture, it has been a different story.

The title of the NYTimes editorial is: "Memo to poor countries: Stand Fast". It applauds the words of the Brazilian foreign minister who said that unless the European Uninon cuts farm subsidies, the current negotiations to open up trade in manufactured goods and services would take "not one month, two months, one year or two years. The talks ... just won't move."