The World Trade Organization (WTO) facilitation trade proposal raised here could cut the costs of trade by half if clinched, most of which are bureaucracy and documents, spokesman of the organization Josep Bosch said here on Wednesday.
The new multilateral trade reform package aims to force all 159 WTO members to streamline and standardize customs procedures to get goods, packages and containers across borders with the minimum of bureaucracy.
Speaking at the press conference on the sideline of the ongoing Ninth WTO Ministerial Conference held in Indonesia's resort island of Bali, Bosch said the cost of trade now is calculated as being 10 percent of the value of the goods.
Bosch added that for developing economies, the cost could be even bigger, say 13-15 percent.
"Of this cost, 7 percent is in documentation and related bureaucracy which involves 20 to 30 different parties, 40 documents, 200 data elements," Bosch said.
The multilateral deal simplifying customs and border measures is a win-win for governments, business and citizens as it would greatly improve efficiency for doing business if sealed by the ministers, according to the spokesman.
The four-day WTO ministers' meeting running from Tuesday until Friday was struggling to revive the long-stalled Doha Round by reaching a possible trade deal and was attended by trade chiefs of the organization's 159 members.