India took the lead and turned the tide of negotiations from failure, gloom and doom to optimism, enthusiasm and consensus-based outcome, said the Union Minister of Commerce and Industry Piyush Goyal while addressing a press conference at Geneva.
Stating that it is a proud day for 135 crores of Indians at the WTO today, Goyal, after the conclusion of the WTO 12th Ministerial Conference in Geneva today, said that India took the lead and was at the centre of the conference.
"It turned the tide of negotiations from full failure, gloom and doom to optimism, enthusiasm and consensus-based decision. India's efforts to bring members to a table to discuss issues irrespective of the existing geopolitical order has ensured that the world order is not broken."
Terming the just concluded MC12 as an "outcome-oriented" success, Goyal said the Indian delegation, guided constantly by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, has been 100 per cent successful in portraying before the world the priority issues for India and the developing world.
He admitted that India and the Developing countries accepted certain compromising decisions when the WTO was established 30 years ago and during the Uruguay Round of negotiations and said, "India today bats on the front foot rather than being fearful on various issues be it Environment, Startups, MSMEs or gender equality. This is a result of the confidence in New India. India is able to build consensus and get a Win-Win outcome for the world."
"Few countries attempted to create false campaign, initially on Sunday and Monday, that India is obstinate due to which no progress is being made. The real situation has emerged before us all, the issues raised by India, on which Prime Minister had asked us to focus upon, now the whole world acknowledges that was the correct agenda and ultimately India played a vital role in arriving at all solutions," Goyal added.
Goyal told the press conference that India has been able to secure a favourable outcome at the WTO after many years, despite a strong global campaign against our farmers and fishermen.
"Today as we return to India there is no issue on which we have to be the least concerned, whether it is related to Agriculture such as MSP, reinforcing the relevance of the Public Stockholding Programme towards fulfilling the National Food Safety Programme or PM Garib Kalyan Scheme, TRIPS Waiver, e-Commerce moratorium, response to covid and fisheries," Goyal said.
"Similarly there have been no restrictions on fishing that our fishermen were deeply concerned about, that would bind artisanal and traditional fishermen of India in the future. India has been cent per cent successful; no restrictions or terms have been placed on India or the Government, rather we have been successful in introducing checks on illegal fishing, under-reporting or outside regulation, viz IUU fishing," he added.
Speaking of the World Food Programme, Goyal said that India remains committed to supporting the World Food Programme (WFP). He said the Government has imposed no export restrictions on WFP purchases for food security in other countries; however, domestic food security takes priority, citing India's recent wheat supplies to Afghanistan.
Commenting on the global fight against the Covid-19, the Union Minister said the Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) decision will boost vaccine equity, accessibility and affordability. It will enable ease of authorisation for the production of patented vaccines and India can produce for domestic requirements and exports.
He also highlighted the WTO Reforms agenda, and said, "The basic structure and core principles of WTO including Consensus, S&DT provisions, SDG goals, will be retained while making it more contemporary. "I believe it will be good for the WTO, and will be good for the Developing and Under-Developed countries in the future and foster global trade through transparent means."
Goyal concluded that India's motto of 'Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam' echoes in the WTO, India not only raised its issues but raised the issues of other developing countries, Least Developed Countries (LDCs), poor and vulnerable with sensitivity and fought bravely for their cause. (ANI)