For The Next WTO Meet, India Has Marked Its Red Line

For the coming month’s ministerial meeting of WTO (World Trade Organisation), India has marked its red lines, and has stated that  it is not ready for discussions on setting up a global regime for new issues related to e-commerce until it addresses issues related to public stock holding and resolves earlier disparities in the global trading system.  “We have certain long-term issues which are developmental issues. The Doha Development Round was an important beginning but somehow lost its way. We are not expecting Buenos Aires (ministerial meeting) to be another reinventing of the Doha developmental issues. We don’t want any new issues to be brought in because there is a tendency of some countries to keep discussing new things instead of discussing what’s already on the plate. We want to keep it focused,” commerce and industry minister Suresh Prabhu said in an interview.India has always tried to resist discussions involving issues like e-commerce to investment facilitation. Countries like US, Japan, Canada, the EU and Australia are demanding a global regime for e-commerce as it aids companies such as Amazon set foot in markets like India, China and Brazil easily. Presently, India for example does not allow business-to-consumer (B2C) e-commerce and is prompting companies like Amazon to function in “marketplaces” where there are restrictions on how much a vendor can sell.There is a need for the government to address several basic issues such as labour and gender which WTO does not cover. These are under “non-trade issues” which India has maintained.Rita Teaotia, the commerce secretary, said at a CII event- “Our position has been continuously that we will not refuse to engage (on new issues such as e-commerce). We are ready to engage. Nevertheless, the technical work must happen at the committee level. These issues must be thrashed out and only when they reach a sufficient level of maturity, they can be brought to a (WTO) ministerial. This is clearly our position.”India’s Ambassador to the WTO, JS Deepak mentioned that India without its own national policy on investment facilitation and e-commerce should not be taking commitments in the WTO. Prabhu has informed that at the Buenos Aires meeting, India will make efforts and look for a solution to public stockholding issues as it curbs its capability to support all its farmers. Also, in the most popular and developed countries apart from the Indian farm goods, it will drive for domestic subsidy reduction for agriculture especially in Australia, Canada, the EU and the US. American government’s approach is important as Donald Trump has seen plenty of questions about free trade agreements that the US had signed.
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For The Next WTO Meet, India Has Marked Its Red Line

Saravana Bhaskar
News Article
22nd Nov, 2017
For The Next WTO Meet, India Has Marked Its Red Line

For the coming month’s ministerial meeting of WTO (World Trade Organisation), India has marked its red lines, and has stated that  it is not ready for discussions on setting up a global regime for new issues related to e-commerce until it addresses issues related to public stock holding and resolves earlier disparities in the global trading system.  

“We have certain long-term issues which are developmental issues. The Doha Development Round was an important beginning but somehow lost its way. We are not expecting Buenos Aires (ministerial meeting) to be another reinventing of the Doha developmental issues. We don’t want any new issues to be brought in because there is a tendency of some countries to keep discussing new things instead of discussing what’s already on the plate. We want to keep it focused,” commerce and industry minister Suresh Prabhu said in an interview.

India has always tried to resist discussions involving issues like e-commerce to investment facilitation. Countries like US, Japan, Canada, the EU and Australia are demanding a global regime for e-commerce as it aids companies such as Amazon set foot in markets like India, China and Brazil easily. Presently, India for example does not allow business-to-consumer (B2C) e-commerce and is prompting companies like Amazon to function in “marketplaces” where there are restrictions on how much a vendor can sell.

There is a need for the government to address several basic issues such as labour and gender which WTO does not cover. These are under “non-trade issues” which India has maintained.

Rita Teaotia, the commerce secretary, said at a CII event- “Our position has been continuously that we will not refuse to engage (on new issues such as e-commerce). We are ready to engage. Nevertheless, the technical work must happen at the committee level. These issues must be thrashed out and only when they reach a sufficient level of maturity, they can be brought to a (WTO) ministerial. This is clearly our position.”

India’s Ambassador to the WTO, JS Deepak mentioned that India without its own national policy on investment facilitation and e-commerce should not be taking commitments in the WTO.

Prabhu has informed that at the Buenos Aires meeting, India will make efforts and look for a solution to public stockholding issues as it curbs its capability to support all its farmers. Also, in the most popular and developed countries apart from the Indian farm goods, it will drive for domestic subsidy reduction for agriculture especially in Australia, Canada, the EU and the US. American government’s approach is important as Donald Trump has seen plenty of questions about free trade agreements that the US had signed.

Saravana
Blog Author

Saravana Bhaskar is the Brain Child behind incubation of White Matter. With over a decade of rich banking experience, he has handled many eminent positions in bank from Global Gateway Coordinator to Portfolio Head -South India. He is catalyst in steering White Matters’ association globally, with his proven abilities of leadership; his vision is to achieve transformational changes at White Matter. Bhaskar is true Car enthusiast, who has an insatiable interest in cars. He is an avid reader, and has ear for Music.

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