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New NAMA Text not Development Friendly for Indian industry: CII Print E-mail
Written by Anand   
Tuesday, 15 July 2008
CII Supports The Conclusion of A Development Driven Doha Round In 2008.

The new NAMA (Non-Agricultural Market Access) text released by the Chairman of the NAMA negotiations Ambassador Don Stephenson on 10 July 2008 continues to include provisions that are sensitive to Indian industry, according to Mr. R. Gopalakrishnan, Chairman CII WTO and Trade Agreements committee.

He said the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) is concerned with two crucial areas of NAMA negotiations - anti-concentration and the principle of sliding scale. Mr. Gopalakrishnan said any agreement on anti-concentration clause would put sensitive industrial sectors in India at risk.

The new draft NAMA text links flexibilities with coefficient, and thereby belittles Para 15 of the Hong Kong declaration that reaffirms the importance of flexibilities and hence its stand alone provision, opined Mr. Gopalakrishnan.

Ambassador Stephenson has continued with the May 2008 coefficients for formula tariff cuts said Mr. Gopalakrishnan and added that the coefficients proposed in the text would mean higher percentage cuts by developing countries compared to developed countries. This he said goes against the less than full reciprocity clause.

Mr. Gopalakrishnan expressed surprise with the inclusion of negotiations on remanufactured goods in the main NAMA text and called for greater study on the issue before its inclusion. He also reiterated India Inc's complete opposition to sectoral negotiations.

Commenting on the new draft Agriculture Text by Chairman Crawford Falconer released on 10 July 2008, Mr. Gopalakrishnan welcomed the revision of the green box subsidies particularly on income support. On special safeguard mechanism (SSM) he said the issue needs to be addressed to the satisfaction of developing countries.

Mr Gopalakrishnan expressed complete confidence in the leadership provided by the Union Minister for Commerce and Industry, Mr Kamal Nath and said that industry in India was sure that its concerns would be fully addressed in Geneva. He supported a substance driven conclusion to the Doha Round at the earliest and expressed hope that the mini - Ministerial due in next 10 days will be able to deliver on the development objective.

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