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India disappointed over non-reaffirmation of Doha round


Nairobi: India today expressed disappointment over non-reaffirmation of the long-stalled Doha Round, agreement on cotton and a few provisions related to phasing out of export subsidies.

In the concluding session here, Commerce and Industry Minister Nirmala Sitharaman registered a strong “disappointment” over the non-reaffirmation of Doha Development Agenda.

She also expressed her concern and “surprise” that a few amendments have been made in the decision and declarations adopted on cotton.

“I very clearly had mentioned under cotton that for the developing countries, we shall not accept the date. That date of 2017 has gone through, which is completely unacceptable to me … So I would still appeal to delete the date given here,” she said at the concluding session of the 10th WTO Ministerial Conference.

According to the draft decision on cotton, the members decided to phase out export subsidies for developed nations immediately, while it has been marked for developing countries not later January 1, 2017.

On the decision agreed on the phasing out of the export subsidies, Sitharaman said in some paragraphs, the “developed members” word has been replaced with “inclusive of developing countries” which is also “not acceptable”.

As per the draft ministerial decision, the WTO members reaffirm their commitment, pursuant to the 2013 Bali Ministerial Declaration on Export Competition, to exercise utmost restraint with regard to any recourse to all forms of export subsidies and all export measures with equivalent effect.

“Developed Members shall immediately eliminate their remaining scheduled export subsidy entitlements as of the date of adoption of this Decision. Developing country Members shall eliminate their export subsidy entitlements by the end of 2018,” the declaration said.

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