India to make another attempt for Doha trade deal

India to make another attempt for Doha trade deal

Nairobi: India will make yet another effort at the ministerial level to give a push to Doha Round of WTO trade talks before leaders of the G-20 meet in Seoul next month.

“I will be travelling to Geneva on 19 October to meet with the chairs of the sub-groups on agriculture, industrial products and services," visiting commerce and industry minister Anand Sharma told reporters in Nairobi.

Talks of negotiating groups on different areas like agriculture and non-agriculture market access (NAMA) are underway, but have not seen much success in the backdrop of the absence of positive signals from the developed countries, particularly the US.

“The US view is that there is no shortcut to a Doha success," US chief agricultural trade negotiator Isi Siddiqui recently said in Brussels. He indicated the Doha negotiations, which are running into the ninth year, may stretch into 2012.

Sharma said India had made efforts in September 2009 to re-energise the Doha talks by convening a ministerial meeting in New Delhi.

Besides, the country has also been raising the issue in the G-20 summits. The issue would come up again in the next summit in Seoul.

“We will wait for the next G-20 summit. India has a commitment to take the present WTO round to a successful conclusion, which will be in the interest of the global economy," he said.

According to officials in the commerce ministry in New Delhi, chances of having a deal in 2010 look bleak.

Negotiators from 153 members of the world trade organisation (WTO) were earlier hoping that at least framework for the final talks can be reached in December immediately after the elections in the US are over.

The goal of the Doha Round is to reduce trade barriers in order to expand global economic growth, development and opportunity.