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Rediff.com  » Business » Kamal Nath to raise agro issues at G-33 meet

Kamal Nath to raise agro issues at G-33 meet

June 10, 2005 15:53 IST
India is likely to go offensive on some of the contentious agriculture issues at the G-33 ministerial meeting in Jakarta where developing countries will firm up their stand for the ongoing WTO negotiations.

Commerce Minister Kamal Nath will head the Indian delegation for the two-day G-33 meeting beginning on June 11, which would finalise the strategy paper with regard to special products and special safeguard mechanism for developing countries.

Special products is a sort of negative list of agriculture products to provide food and livelihood security to poor farmers in developing countries.

Special safeguard mechanism is aimed preventing any undue surge in farm imports to protect domestic producers.

Under special products, developing countries will strive to have a list of sensitive items that were crucial to maintain food security and address livelihood concerns.

Developing countries believe that they should be given more flexibility on this issue and G-33 is expected to submit a draft on this to WTO soon.

Under the special safeguard mechanism, developing countries want the criteria of volume surge and fall in prices on account of imports in sharp contrast to developed nations proposal to have only volume criterion.

The ministers are expected to deliberate on these issues so that the sensitivities are reflected in the first approximation expected by July and in Hong Kong declaration.

Indonesia is the coordinator of the G-33, which consists of 42 countries including China, Korea, Pakistan, India and Venezuela among others.

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