Even in Cancun the great debate was whether the multilateral trading system was moving fast and far enoughnot whether it should be rolled back. Indeed, it is critically important that we draw the right conclusions from Cancunwhich are only now becoming clearer. The disappointment was that ministers were unable to reach agreement. The achievement was that they exposed the risks of failure, highlighted the need for North-South collaboration, andafter a period of introspectionacknowledged the inescapable logic of negotiation. Cancun showed that, if the challenges have increased, it is because the stakes are higher.
Supachai Panitchpakdi, American Leadership and the World Trade Organization: What Is the Alternative? Address before the National Press Club, Washington, D.C. (Feb. 26, 2004), at www.wto.org/english/news_e/spsp_e/spsp22_.htm.