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ECLAC chief hails WTO Bali deal


SANTIAGO, Dec. 11 (Xinhua) -- The World Trade Organization's (WTO) latest deal to streamline trade among more than 150 countries "is excellent news," said Alicia Barcena, executive secretary of the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC).

Barcena made the remarks when presenting the ECLAC annual report, "Preliminary Overview of the Economies of Latin America and the Caribbean 2013" at a press conference.

Answering a question raised by Xinhua, Barcena said the deal reached in Indonesia's Bali last week gave a new boost to the Doha Round talks, which were launched in 2001 to liberalize international trade.

Barcena highlighted "the agriculture agreements of the 'Bali Package' because they will allow the developing countries to safeguard their food security by establishing public stocks of food."

As for streamlining trade, she said that "the decision to speed up the customs procedures and the flow of goods will have a great impact on job creation."

The Bali deal marked the first time that the WTO has agreed on three fundamental points -- reducing agriculture export subsidies, trade facilitation and tariffs to the most vulnerable members.

"The WTO's Bali agreement will go a long way to boost international trade, especially in the agriculture field and for development, because it places the WTO as the main forum to establish trade rules in an inclusive and transparent manner, with a focus on developing countries," she added.