Trade talk progress

DAVOS, Switzerland - US Trade Representative Susan Schwab yesterday played down hopes of a breakthrough at a meeting on deadlocked global trade talks this weekend, but said progress was being made.

DAVOS, Switzerland - US Trade Representative Susan Schwab yesterday played down hopes of a breakthrough at a meeting on deadlocked global trade talks this weekend, but said progress was being made.

"I don't think we're looking at a breakthrough in the near term," Schwab said on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum in Davos.

"But I think we're making some progress and some of the key players really are engaging - Brazil, the EU, the US and other countries - and that makes me cautiously optimistic that we are laying the groundwork for a breakthrough," she said.

Ministers from about 30 key trading nations are due to meet World Trade Organisation director-general Pascal Lamy in Davos tomorrow.

Schwab said: "I know there are issues within the EU that have to be resolved." - Sapa-AFP

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