WTO deal will go a long way in restoring faith in multilateral trade system: CII

NEW DELHI: A package of trade agreements signed by the 164-member World Trade Organisation (WTO) in the wee hours of Friday in Geneva will go a long way in restoring faith in the multilateral trade system, industry body CII said.

“CII welcomes the historic trade deal agreed upon by the 160 plus members of the WTO at the conclusion of the 12th Ministerial Conference held at Geneva,” said Chandrajit Banerjee, Director General, Confederation of Indian Industry (CII). Banerjee complimented Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal for emphatically raising the issues of India and developing countries as a group.

The 12th WTO Ministerial Conference held after more than four years produced the “Geneva Package”, which contains a series of historic decisions such as on disciplining fisheries subsidies aimed at controlling Illegal, Unreported & Unregulated Fishing (IUUF), WTO response to emergencies, including a patent waiver for COVID-19 vaccines, food safety and agriculture, and WTO reforms.

“Last time at Bali in Indonesia, WTO Ministers adopted a comprehensive package, which finally resulted in Trade facilitation agreement getting annexed to the WTO legal text. Hence, it is almost after a decade since the Ministerial Conference has been able to deliver an important deal in the form of “Geneva Package”, which would help in restoring the faith of the international community in this rule-based multilateral trading system,” Banerjee added.

From India’s point of view, the outcomes on fisheries subsidies, public stockholding for food security, TRIPs waiver for COVID vaccine manufacturing and Ministerial decision to reinvigorate the work under the Work Programme on Electronic Commerce, are historical. India, through its very consistent and principled stand, ensured that the rights of fishermen, farmers, poor and marginalised, MSMEs in trade and business, are protected.

(The one-stop destination for MSME, ET RISE provides news, views and analysis around GST, Exports, Funding, Policy and small business management.)

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