Swadeshi Jagran Manch extend full support to Suresh Prabhu’s stance at 11th Ministerial Conference of WTO.

Swadeshi Jagaran Manch

“Dharamakshetra, Sector-8, R.K. Puram, New Delhi
Ph. 011-26184595, Web: www.swadeshionline.in

Press Release

11th Ministerial Conference of WTO, Buenos Aires
December 12, 2017, 9.00AM

We at Swadesh Jagran Manch extend full support to the Commerce and Industries Minister Suresh Prabhu’s stance at 11th Ministerial Conference of World Trade Organisation, at Buenos Aires, Argentina. In the same breath, we also condemn the statement issued by the US Trade Representative Ambassador Robert Emmet Lighthizer. Pabhu’s statement is in complete alignment with the SJM’s thoughts and extended full confidence and support in him. SJM expect the minister to maintain this stand, on the table of negotiations as well. The Commence minister articulated the desires and needs of not only those living at the bottom of pyramid back home, but also those in the developing and poor countries.

The delegation of Swadeshi Jagran Manch led by Dr Ashwani Mahajan at Buenos Aires has already shared their thoughts with the minister. It is long standing demand of SJM that WTO must not abandon the commitments made in the Doha Development Agenda.

We strongly believe that the outcome of the expansion of global trade must be development, and back India’s push for re-endorsement of the same. SJM also appreciate minister’s stand on pushing for a permanent solution on the public stockholding for food security purposes. SJM believes that for developing countries like India, it is a matter of survival for 800 million hungry and under-nourished people across the world. Instead aggregate measure of support extended by the developed countries is creating trade distortion and is harming the farmers in developing countries.

Along with this, SJM welcome the stand that no new agenda –investment facilitation, E-commence & others—will be brought for discussion before agenda items are complete.

SJM criticize the stance taken by the US trade representative. The world is not a homogenous mix of demography. There has to be a differential application of rules, depending on the well being of the economies. It is quite arrogant of the US administration of believing that countries are seeking pass in the name of ‘self-proclaimed development’ status, indicating that five of the six richest countries in the world presently ‘claim’ developing country status. This list includes India. But, the US must realize that the level of development is not the same. In days to come, SJM would ask the US administration to come clean on these charges.

SJM really appreciate the efforts made by the minister to recognize the plight of traditional farmers, and demanded policy space for fisheries. These traditional fishermen survive on fishing, can’t be left alone to the global magnets. SJM agrees with the minister’s stand that turning to some of the new issues that are sought to be introduced into the negotiating agenda of the WTO, in India's view agreeing to these would be extremely divisive. SJM too continues to stand on the view that the bringing issues, like investments, MSMEs and ecommerce has nothing to do with trade, but it should not be not be confused with gains from negotiating binding rules in this area.

Dr Ashwani Mahajan
National Co Convenor, SJM