DEVELOPING COUNTRIES TO DISCUSS POST-QUOTA PLANS

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As the removal of the global textile trade quotas are just nine months away, there is a new fervour among developing countries to devise a cohesive plan for the post-quota era.

The 39th session of the International Textiles and Clothing Bureau (ITCB), being held in New Delhi from April 5-8, will discuss the residual issues of the Agreement on Textiles and Clothing, to find out how a common plank would benefit developing countries and to the extent to which the approach would be feasible.

ITCB is an exclusive inter-governmental organisation of developing countries in the area of textiles and clothing. A senior textile ministry official said: "The ITCB members are going to use the New Delhi meeting to discuss the ways and means for guarding against non-tariff and other forms of disguised protection."

The meeting would also provide the members a timely occasion for international consultations on the Doha Round issues concerning textiles."

NK Singh, member, planning commission, will inaugurate the ITCB session. KM Chandrasekhar, India's ambassador to the WTO, is the current chairman of the ITCB. ITCB members include Argentina, Brazil, China, Egypt, Indonesia, Pakistan and Thailand. About 80 delegates from various countries will participate in the Delhi session. In addition to problems associated with quota restrictions, the ITCB has lately been devoting increasing attention to non-quota issues.

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