• World Trade Organization;
  • trade policy;
  • free trade;
  • European Union;
  • Doha Round

This article reflects on how close World Trade Organization members came to reaching agreement in Geneva last July on the key agricultural and industrial issues at the heart of the Doha Round. But since 6 November, when the text of this article was finalised, the global economy has been in continuing decline and there was insufficient convergence on outstanding issues to justify a new ministerial meeting tentatively planned for December. The prospects of completing the round by the end of 2009 have therefore weakened.