texts reproduced in this section do not have the legal
standing of the original documents which are entrusted
and kept at the WTO Secretariat in Geneva.
to a basic explanation of the agreements ...
a more technical one
decide as follows:
Negotiations shall be entered into on a voluntary basis with a
view to the progressive liberalization of trade in telecommunications
transport networks and services (hereinafter referred to as “basic telecommunications”) within the framework of the
General Agreement on Trade in Services.
Without prejudice to their outcome, the negotiations shall be
comprehensive in scope, with no basic telecommunications excluded a
A Negotiating Group on Basic Telecommunications (hereinafter
referred to as the “NGBT”) is established to carry out this
mandate. The NGBT shall
report periodically on the progress of these negotiations.
The negotiations in the NGBT shall be open to all governments
and the European Communities which announce their intention to
participate. To date, the
following have announced their intention to take part in the
Austria, Canada, Chile, Cyprus, European Communities and their member
States, Finland, Hong Kong, Hungary, Japan, Korea, Mexico, New
Zealand, Norway, Slovak Republic, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, United
notifications of intention to participate shall be addressed to the
depositary of the Agreement Establishing the World Trade Organization.
The NGBT shall hold its first negotiating session no later than
16 May 1994. It shall
conclude these negotiations and make a final report no later than 30 April
1996. The final report of
the NGBT shall include a date for the implementation of results of
Any commitments resulting from the negotiations, including the
date of their entry into force, shall be inscribed in the Schedules
annexed to the General Agreement on Trade in Services and shall be
subject to all the provisions of the Agreement.
Commencing immediately and continuing until the implementation
date to be determined under paragraph 5, it is understood that no
participant shall apply any measure affecting trade in basic
telecommunications in such a manner as would improve its negotiating
position and leverage. It
is understood that this provision shall not prevent the pursuit of
commercial and governmental arrangements regarding the provision of
basic telecommunications services.
The implementation of paragraph 7 shall be subject to
surveillance in the NGBT. Any
participant may bring to the attention of the NGBT any action or
omission which it believes to be relevant to the fulfilment of
paragraph 7. Such
notifications shall be deemed to have been submitted to the NGBT upon
their receipt by the Secretariat.
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