India on Saturday opposed the WTO’s Nairobi Ministerial Declaration not entirely reaffirming the development mandate of the ongoing Doha Round negotiations aimed at opening up global trade. The Tenth Ministerial Conference of the WTO was held at Nairobi from December 15-19.
The Indian delegation was led by Commerce Minister, Nirmala Sitharaman.
The Ministerial Declaration circulated on Saturday reflects the division amongst the WTO membership on the issue of the reaffirmation of the Doha mandate, according to an official statement.
India, along with other developing countries, especially most members of the G-33, LDCs, the Africa Group and the ACP, wanted a reaffirmation of the mandate of the Doha Round, it said.
While the majority were in favour of such reaffirmation, a few members opposed the reaffirmation of the Doha mandate, it added.
This marks a significant departure from the fundamental WTO principle of consensus-based decision making, the statement said.
Notwithstanding the difficulty in the negotiations, the draft Declaration reflects India’s demand for a reaffirmation from all members to work towards a permanent solution on public stockholding, it claimed.
Further, it also provides a Ministerial affirmation that till such time a permanent solution is found, the peace clause shall continue to be in place, the commerce ministry statement said.
The draft Declaration also reflects India’s demand for a Ministerial decision to develop a special safeguard mechanism for agricultural products that will be available for developing countries.