BASF chief executive Hambrecht urges end to Doha delays

29 June 2010 16:49  [Source: ICIS news]

TORONTO (ICIS news)--BASF chief executive Jurgen Hambrecht on Tuesday urged an end to delays and stalling in concluding the Doha round of trade talks.

With the necessary political will, Doha could be concluded by the end of the year, despite the need to clarify details, Hambrecht said. The current Doha trade round began in 2001.

Doha would add an estimated $150bn (€122bn) stimulus to the global economy, Hambrecht said in an interview German news agency dpa.

Hambrecht and Hans-Peter Keitel, president of Germany’s industry trade group BDI attended Sunday’s G20 summit in Toronto, at the suggestion of Germany’s government. Hambrecht heads BDI’s Asia-Pacific committee.

Hambrecht also said he was wary of bilateral trade agreements, which involved bureaucracy and high costs.

He was echoing concerns that the much-delayed Doha round could disintegrate into a wave of bilateral or multilateral deals that may undercut the drive for global harmonisation.

BDI’s Keitel, for his part, noted the G20’s broad agreement on cutting public budget deficits and reducing debts in order to restore trust in finance and politics.

Germany earlier this month announced a €80bn budget cut package, despite calls from US economists on Europe’s largest economy to do more to drive the global recovery.

($1 = €0.81)

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