India has fully defended the interests of farmers and fishermen at the recently concluded World Trade Organization (WTO) ministerial conference in Geneva, Trade and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal said on Sunday.
Goyal, who is leading the Indian delegation to the WTO talks, also said the decisions taken at the conference would further strengthen the role of the multilateral body to promote world trade, and India supports the cause of developing and underdeveloped countries.
Members of the Geneva-based WTO on June 17 provided a “Geneva Package” that included agreements to limit harmful fisheries subsidies and suspend patents for the production of vaccines against COVID-19.
The four-day talks of the 164-member body, which began on June 12th, ended on June 17th after tense negotiations.
“In the WTO Ministerial Conference, we fully defended the interests of farmers, SMEs and fishermen. There will be no burden for them. We defended their interests, “the minister said here at an event where Prime Minister Narendra Modi dedicated the main tunnel and five subways of the Pragati Maidan Integrated Transit Corridor project to the nation.
The integrated transit corridor project is an integral part of the Pragati Maidan reconstruction project.
“Illegal fishing on the high seas is being checked and our fishermen will have full freedom in our EEZ (exclusive economic zones). In the same way, we have ensured the preservation of SMEs (minimum support price) and the interests of our farmers are protected,” he said. he said.
Developed farming countries will not be able to provide subsidies for illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing activities, he added.
In addition, SME operations for farmers are also protected and “farmers will not have any problems,” he said.
The WTO formulates rules for global exports and imports and resolves disputes between two or more countries. According to its rules, all decisions are taken by consensus and one Member State can veto a decision.
Speaking about the Pragati Maidan Integrated Transit Corridor project, Goyal said it would help reduce congestion at the Bhairon Marg here near India’s gates.
He said the tunnel was part of a plan to renovate the ITPO’s Pragati Maidan site and that this state-of-the-art congress and exhibition center would be ready in time for India’s chairmanship of the G20 summit next December.
Complaining about Delhi’s brief insensitivity to the Pragati Maidan corridor, Goyal said the state government had unfortunately ignored repeated reminders to fulfill its share of just 20 percent of the project’s costs. “When the state government showed complete composure, Prime Minister Modi said the central government would bear the full cost of the project,” he said.
Goyal said that the time, direction and concern shown by Prime Minister Modi for this project show his sensitivity to the people of Delhi.