India and WTO: Latest Negotiation Talks

Union Commerce and Industry Minister Mrs. Nirmala Sitharaman attended both the-day Mini-Ministerial gathering of Trade Ministers organized by Norway in Oslo. This meeting assumed significance, since it was convened to informally discuss various issues amongst the World Trade Organisation negotiations, as and then to set activity is for your Eleventh Ministerial Conference in the WTO to be kept in Buenos Aires in Argentina in December 2017.

This meeting occurred from the backdrop of the requirement of continued Ministerial engagement to find a way forward within the WTO negotiations, which are stuck, primarily because of the intransigence from the developed world. The Doha Round of Trade Negotiations, which began in 2001, must be continued. Indian position is always that no new issues must be introduced, before the finishing the Doha Round of negotiations.

Ironically, the Doha Round of Negotiations has remained stalled since 2008, primarily over the issue of giant trade-distorting subsidies receiving to farmers through the rich countries. India, along with Third world countries, wants a reaffirmation finally the Doha Development Agenda first, however the western world attempt to mostly dilute the negotiations and also to widen the mandate with new issues.

Included in the Doha Round, the developing countries want the developed nations to substantially reduce their farm subsidies. India also wants the developing countries to have the right to recourse to Special Safeguard Mechanism for Agricultural Products, because it is needed these countries to increase tariffs in case of sudden surge in imports or dip in global commodity prices.

Presently, all countries are devoted to elimination of agricultural export subsidies this, however, is be subject to the preservation of Special and Differential Strategy for developing countries, like longer phase out period for transportation and marketing export subsidies.

Mrs. Sitharaman highlighted the centrality of the development dimension of the Doha Round. She underscored the need for prioritizing the implementation of Bali and Nairobi Ministerial Decisions.

The Indian Minister also highlighted the necessity for the Trade Facilitation Agreement on Services where New Delhi recently introduced a thought Note within the WTO. That is expected to remove unnecessary regulatory and administrative burden of cross-border way to obtain services benefiting all members.

She stressed the need for ensuring adequate policy space for the developing countries within the negotiations. Her emphasis was on underlining the requirement for setting up a level-game for developing countries in agricultural trade by addressing inequities and distortions, which can be threatening the livelihood of numerous poor farmers across the world.

Now, it has an insistent and imperative requirement of Special and Differential provisions in the disciplines on fisheries subsidies, because there is livelihood and food security concerns of fishermen in Developing countries.

India’s stated position is always that progress in Indian agriculture, through which self-sufficiency in foodgrains continues to be achieved, was derived in good part from government support in the form of land reforms, agricultural credits, price supports, irrigation, fertilizers and pesticide services.

India has now a responsibility to implement its ambitious food security programme, which is why it has to maintain buffer stocks. It is for this reason that India has been seeking concrete work intends on Special Safeguard Mechanism for developing countries to protect their farmers from the spurt in imports and on a permanent treatment for grain procurement and food security in the united kingdom, as agreed upon from the Bali Ministerial.

With the last Nairobi Ministerial in December, 2015, Mrs. Nirmala Sitharaman negotiated hard to ensure that the WTO is constantly on the place the interest of developing and least civilized world in the middle of its agenda.

Remember, few civilized world, including America, opposed the continuation with the Doha Round. Once the next meeting takes place Argentina in pick up, India would have to persist with these efforts, in order to ensure that justice is completed to the under-developed and also the developing world, especially facing the stout resistance from your planet.