” The WTO’s 149 member states are seeking agreement on cutting tariffs across the world economy, but Turkey — with the backing of some producers such as Mauritius — wants textiles made a special case . ” “It would in my view be very strange, and that, by the way, was the reaction of a large part of the members,” Lamy said . ” Turkey, like other textile and clothing producers, has struggled to compete against China and India since the WTO ended its global system of export quotas at the start of 2005 . ” Many countries have preferential access to the United States and other markets under various trade programmes and fear these benefits will be eroded under a pact that cuts textile and clothing duties aggressively . ” The Turkish proposal, made last week to the WTO negotiating committee on industrial tariffs, was firmly opposed by China, which accused Turkey of attempting to re-institute restrictions on textile trade . ” Lamy noted that while the WTO negotiations on industrial tariffs, known as NAMA in WTO-speak, allowed for separate sector treatment, this was normally aimed at securing even steeper cuts than those envisaged in an overall deal . ” “This would be a new animal — a NAMA-minus — in a negotiation where we have always structured the thing so that there may be NAMA-plus,” Lamy told journalists . ” In Washington Turkey’s trade minister said on Monday he had the support of U.S. Trade Representative Rob Portman for the plan, which was applauded by the U.S. textile industry . ” The textile industry is one of the most vocal U.S. opponents to trade liberalisation and many members of Portman’s own Republican Party favour continued protection . ” But U.S. officials in Geneva said that Washington has not taken any position on the plan .Source: Reuters .