Many missions for India as WTO negotiations lose momentum – Marseille News

Many missions for India as WTO negotiations lose momentum – Marseille NewsAs a result of the ongoing attacks by the US on countries, including China and India, to nominate themselves as developing countries in the WTO “self-nominating” in order to enjoy special trade advantages and differentiation, New Delhi is on a policy of voluntary renunciation of such status.

While the 12th ministerial meeting of the World Trade Organization (WTO), slated to begin on November 30, is postponed indefinitely due to the emergence of the Covid situation, the fate of several critical issues in developing countries, particularly India, is at stake.

Official sources told FE that in the meantime, New Delhi will continue to work with other developing countries and press for key demands, including a patent waiver, to make Covid-19 vaccines a permanent solution for its food security public procurement programs, not an immediate one End on fisheries subsidies for most developing countries and on WTO reforms.

However, in the absence of a strict timetable for resuming the ministerial meeting, which usually results in an urgent need to resolve outstanding issues, developing countries will find it difficult to make significant progress in the negotiations in the near future.

But the key is “to keep going,” they added.

Public markets

In the foreground of the demands of India and the rest of the so-called G-33 (a coalition of developing countries) is a permanent solution to the problem of public procurement for food security. India’s main procurement programs are criminally protected by a peace clause enacted in 2013 at the WTO ministerial conference in Bali (permanent status was confirmed in late 2014). However, some countries have started calling for new guarantees and transparency commitments after New Delhi used the peace clause on its rice purchases in 2018-19 and 2019-2020.

New Delhi has sought a permanent solution in the WTO so that that protection is further strengthened by the Permanent Peace Clause, and even if a member country breaks its promise and complains about India’s procurement program, the global dispute settlement mechanism becomes its appeal.

It will also look for a special protection mechanism for developing countries, as is also available for industrialized countries, in order to protect their farmers from irrational import peaks.

Patent waiver for Covid vaccines

India will continue to work with its allies to pressure developed countries like the EU to get a surrender of intellectual property rights on Covid-19 vaccines and supplies to better fight the pandemic around the world. The proposal, launched jointly by India and South Africa a year ago, is met with fierce opposition, especially in the EU, the United Kingdom and Switzerland, although the USA agreed to renounce it after initial reluctance.

Shyamal Misra, co-secretary at the Commerce Department, said Thursday that India will speak not only for itself but also for other developing countries with which it works closely.

Fishing subsidies

New Delhi supports a 25-year exemption from the ban on overfishing subsidies for developing countries that do not fish on the high seas. At the same time, he suggests that over the course of these 25 years the major grantors should end their distributions and pave the way for most developing countries to follow suit.

India believes that the major subsidy donors (advanced fishing countries) should take greater responsibility for eliminating their distributions and reducing fishing capacity according to the “polluter pays” and “shared but differentiated responsibilities” principles.

Massive subsidies, especially from the major fishing nations, have contributed to overfishing of the world’s fish stocks. An independent study by a group of authors led by U Rashid Sumaila of the University of British Columbia shows that fisheries subsidies in India were only 227 million US dollars in 2018, but below 7.26 billion US dollars in China and 3 in the EU $ 80 billion. $ 3.43 billion in the US, $ 3.19 billion in South Korea, and $ 2.86 billion in Japan.

WTO reforms

As a result of the continued attacks by the US on countries, including China and India, to “label themselves” as developing countries in the WTO in order to enjoy special trade advantages and to be differentiated, New Delhi is rooted in a policy of voluntariness, renouncing one Status.

He also stressed that any reform program “must be development-oriented, preserve the core values ​​of the multilateral trading system and strengthen the provisions on special and differential treatment” for poor and developing countries in existing and future agreements.

New Delhi also called for the swift reinstatement of the almost dysfunctional WTO Dispute Settlement Body without diluting its core elements. The United States has blocked the appointment of judges, paralyzing the WTO’s appeals mechanism.