Agriculture Press Release

June 10, 1999

Crawford to Meet With WTO Officials Over Trade

TALLAHASSEE Florida Agriculture Commissioner Bob Crawford will meet with officials at the World Trade Organization next week to express the position of the states agriculture industry in anticipation of the next round of international trade negotiations, which kick off in November.

Crawford will meet with U.S. Ambassador Rita Derrick Hayes, Deputy U.S. Trade Representative and the U.S. Permanent Representative to the WTO, in Geneva, as well as other WTO officials to focus attention on the concerns of Floridas agriculture industry in the upcoming trade talks. Agriculture negotiators will begin closed-door sessions the following week.

The trip comes 13 days after Crawford hosted a meeting with officials from the U.S. Trade Representatives Office and the U.S. Department of Agriculture in Winter Haven for the federal officials to obtain the views of Floridas agribusiness community. An estimated 300 growers attended the meeting, which included a panel consisting of Crawford; Ambassador Susan Esserman, Deputy U.S. Trade Representative; and Dr. Isi Siddiqui, Trade Adviser to U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Dan Glickman.

Crawfords top priorities in the upcoming trade negotiations are special rules for perishable products, expanded market access for Florida agricultural products, rapid dispute resolution, and strict adherence to plant and animal pest and disease standards.

The next round of international trade negotiations will begin with the Ministerial Meeting in Seattle, November 30--December 3, which will be attended by representatives of 150 nations.


For more information:

Terence McElroy
(850) 488-3022

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