The Ministers noted that the failure of the Uruguay Round Negotiations in Brussels in December last year was due to the uncompromising position of major contracting parties. They expressed extreme concern that despite the damage that such impasse in negotiations had done to the world trading system, no serious efforts seem to have come forth from the major trading partners to move the negotiations forward during the past nine months.

The Ministers reaffirmed the importance that they attached to the strengthening and improvement of the multilateral trading system as embodied in the GATT. They deem it as the only viable alternative to the system wherein stronger trading nations used unilateral or bilateral pressures to extract trade concessions from smaller and weaker partners. They therefore strongly urged that all participants in the Uruguay Round, particularly those major players who had vital influence on the pace and direction of the negotiations, exert the necessary political will to expedite the conclusion of the Uruguay Round by the end of this year.

The Ministers reiterated their basic conviction that in order for the Round to be successful, its results must provide real and substantial benefits to all participants in a balanced and equitable manner.