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Last Updated: Friday, 7 October 2005, 19:54 GMT 20:54 UK
Brown aims to boost G8 'progress'
Gordon Brown
The UK should be judged aid and trade, Mr Brown says
Achievements at July's G8 summit will be undermined if progress is not made at key world trade talks in December, Chancellor Gordon Brown has said.

In a speech in Edinburgh he warned that "protectionist" rules are preventing "poor people from throwing off the shackles of poverty".

Some African farmers face tariffs of 300% on trade with Europe, he said.

The UK's presidency of G8 should be judged on progress on aid, debt and trade, according to Mr Brown.

In an event organised by the Scottish Catholic International Aid Fund, Mr Brown pointed to the doubling of aid to Africa and the International Finance Facility for immunisation, which is expected to save 10 million lives.

He cited the write-off of multilateral debt for the world's poorest countries secured at the meeting of G8 finance ministers at Gleneagles earlier this year, and confirmed last month at the annual meetings of the World Bank and International Monetary Fund.

Trade round

The Chancellor was speaking ahead of the World Trade Organisation summit in Hong Kong in December, which aims to give developing countries more access to Western markets for agricultural products.

The key to progress is progress on agriculture
Gordon Brown

So far talks between the EU and the US have been deadlocked over how much each side would agree to cut its farm subsidies.

Mr Brown criticised the "hypocrisy" of rich nations which restrict trade with the developing world.

"The key to progress is progress on agriculture, for most of the world's poor still depend for their livelihoods on farming," he said.

He also said the "waste" of the EU Common Agricultural Policy must be tackled.

Earlier in the week, the UK government announced that it would set up a partnership forum between the G8 and African countries to monitor whether pledges on additional aid for Africa had been met.

Meanwhile, Mr Brown announced that donations given to charities over the telephone in the UK could now attract tax relief automatically.

The Treasury would be removing a need for each caller to provide written confirmation of a desire to apply Gift Aid.

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