Tepid trade-offs: On the WTO 13th Ministerial Conference (MC13) in Abu Dhabi

Syllabus: GS-II, Subject: International relation, Topic: Regional and global grouping, Issue: WTO 13th Ministerial Conference (MC13) in Abu Dhabi

MC13 of WTO

  • Despite lengthy discussions, no significant achievements were reached.
  • Importance of the WTO is growing due to – global conflicts, disruptions in shipment routes, and supply chain adjustments.
  • Additional threat – Inward-looking tendencies and tariff-heavy policies.
  • The MC13 declaration acknowledges challenges such as ensuring open and resilient supply chains.
  • Disagreements persist among WTO member countries, particularly on agriculture and fisheries subsidies. (Some progress has been made in agriculture discussions)
  • Exemption of custom duties on e-commerce received a two-year extension, India’s concerns were not fully addressed.
  • Efforts to revive the WTO’s dispute resolution body remain uncertain.
  • India successfully opposed an investment facilitation pact led by China at MC13.
  • India needs to intensify efforts to safeguard policy space, especially for sensitive sectors like agriculture.
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