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Developing Countries Call US Trade Plan Insufficient


Key developing countries say an offer by the United States to cut agricultural subsidies and re-start stalled negotiations on a global free-trade pact is insufficient.

Brazilian Foreign Minister Celso Amorim made the statement to reporters Tuesday in Geneva, following a meeting of ministers of leading developing and industrialized countries.

The discussions came one day after the United States said at talks in Switzerland it is ready to reduce certain agricultural subsidies by 60 percent.

The European Union also proposed cuts in farm supports, while Japan rejected the U.S. offer.

Developing countries say subsidies to farmers in rich nations give these farmers an unfair advantage on world markets.

Diplomats say this week's discussions may be the last chance to secure the broad outlines of a global trade treaty before a key Hong Kong summit on World Trade in December.

Some information for this report provided by AP and Reuters.

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