WASHINGTON–Collapse of the latest discussions at the so-called Doha round of trade talks under the auspices of the World Trade Organization is a “lost opportunity for the world’s economy, especially the developing nations most in need of insurance and other services,” according to an insurance industry representative.
David Snyder, a vice president and assistant general counsel at the American Insurance Association, said it is especially a problem for the developing nations who are in dire need of insurance and other services.
Mr. Snyder’s comments were made in the wake of the collapse of the talks, primarily because of the desire of such nations as China, India and Brazil to protect their agricultural sectors.
The objective for U.S. insurers in the talks was to establish a set of deadlines and atmosphere leading to “genuine additional market-opening, especially in large parts of Asia and countries in Latin America and Africa,” Mr. Snyder said.
U.S. insurers sought breakthroughs that would assure that existing liberalization is enforced and that new market openings are allowed in those areas.
He said that as a result of the collapse of the talks, U.S. insurers are looking at alternatives that would de-link services from agriculture and manufacturing.
And, he said, “we are looking at other avenues to open insurance markets.”
Specifically, he said, “while this week’s developments are disappointing, we are aggressively pursing the mutual interests of insurers and policymakers to expand insurance markets and provide the many societal benefits that flow from open, competitive insurance markets.”