In news– The G-33 Virtual Informal Ministerial Meeting organized by Indonesia was held recently.
Key highlights of the meeting-
- The meeting was organized to discuss the Agricultural Priority Issues of G33 and the Way Forward for the Twelfth Ministerial Conference (MC-12) of WTO scheduled to be held from 30th November to 3rd December 2021.
- The Informal Ministerial Meeting was chaired by the Minister of Trade of the Republic of Indonesia.
- Out of a total of 47 G-33 Members, representatives from 21 Member countries, including India, took the floor to make brief intervention.
- India’s official delegation for the meeting was headed by the Minister of Commerce & Industry.
- In a revised G-33 proposal on public stockholding submitted to the WTO, India became a signatory.
About G-33/ Friends of Special Products-
- G-33 is a coalition of developing countries, established prior to the 2003 Cancun ministerial conference, that have coordinated during the Doha Round of WTO negotiations, specifically in regard to agriculture.
- Dominated by India, the group has “defensive” concerns regarding agriculture in relation to WTO negotiations, and seeks to limit the degree of market opening required of developing countries.
- The group has advocated the creation of a “special products” exemption, which would allow developing countries to exempt certain products from tariff reductions, and also a “special safeguard mechanism” which would permit tariff increases in response to import surges.
Twelfth Ministerial Conference (MC-12) of WTO-
- The MC-12 will take place from 30 November to 3 December 2021 in Geneva, Switzerland.
- The Conference will be chaired by Kazakhstan’s Minister of Trade and Integration, Bakhyt Sultanov, as approved by WTO members in December 2019.
- The Ministerial Conference, which is attended by trade ministers and other senior officials from the WTO’s 164 members, is the highest decision-making body of the WTO.