fbpx

Day 26 – Q 3. What are India’s concerns with respect to the ongoing negotiations in the WTO on the issue of fishery subsidies? Are India’s concerns justified? Analyse. (15 Marks)

  • IASbaba
  • February 25, 2022
  • 0
Ethics Theory, GS 4, TLP-UPSC Mains Answer Writing
Print Friendly, PDF & Email

3. What are India’s concerns with respect to the ongoing negotiations in the WTO on the issue of fishery subsidies? Are India’s concerns justified? Analyse. (15 Marks)

मात्स्यिकी सब्सिडी के मुद्दे पर विश्व व्यापार संगठन में चल रही वार्ता के संबंध में भारत की क्या चिंताएं हैं? क्या भारत की चिंता जायज है? विश्लेषण करें।

Approach-

Candidates need to mention India’s concerns with respect to the ongoing negotiations in the WTO on the issue of fishery subsidies. Also, the candidate needs to analyse if India’s concerns are justified or not.

Introduction

WTO negotiations aimed at disciplining fisheries subsidies are based on the 2001 Doha mandate, supplemented by a more detailed one agreed at the 2005 Hong Kong Ministerial Conference. These mandates call for WTO Members to strengthen disciplines on subsidies in the fisheries sector, including through the prohibition of certain forms of fisheries subsidies that contribute to overcapacity and over-fishing. Members also agreed that appropriate and effective special and differential treatment for developing and least-developed Members should be an integral part of the fisheries subsidies negotiations, taking into account the importance of this sector to development priorities, poverty reduction, and livelihood, and food security concerns.

India’s concerns with respect to the ongoing negotiations in the WTO on the issue of fishery subsidies

  • India has rejected the latest draft text on fishery floated by the World Trade Organization (WTO) this week, saying it is imbalanced, weak and unfair, and doesn’t address its concerns on food security and livelihood of small fishers, instead favouring developed nations. 
  • It is unacceptable to India because it fails to uphold the much-needed sustainability of fisheries.
  • Going by the estimates put out by the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), nearly two-thirds of the $35-billion subsidies go to enterprises engaged in commercial fishing. 
  • On the other hand, the developing countries’ subsidies, just a fraction of it, are aimed mostly at facilitating livelihood security for the fisheries-dependent coastal communities. 
  • To correct this imbalance, India has proposed that the rich countries stop subsidising fishing in distant waters beyond their exclusive economic zones (EEZ) for 25 years. This would give time to the other countries to build their own sustainable fisheries capabilities.

Are India’s concerns are justified due to the following reasons: 

  • India is in favour of stopping IUU (illegal, unreported, unregulated) fishing and supporting sustainable fishing by checking harmful subsidies.
  • However, the text is tilted heavily towards advanced fishing nations letting them maintain their subsidies for high-sea fishing.
  • At the same time developing countries are denied adequate carve-outs that could hurt both livelihood and food security interests.
  • India will oppose developed nations’ proposal of forging government-to-government access agreements wherein two countries can sign a pact for fishing activities. India is critical of such agreements as they will lead to exploitation of least developed nations.
  • India is also of the view that developed nations should assume more responsibility for the huge amounts of subsidies and should cut it down to reduce overfishing.

Conclusion

Subsidies do not lead to trade distortions on their own. Subsidies for food security needs to be treated differently than the subsidies for exports.

For a dedicated peer group, Motivation & Quick updates, Join our official telegram channel – https://t.me/IASbabaOfficialAccount

Subscribe to our YouTube Channel HERE to watch Explainer Videos, Strategy Sessions, Toppers Talks & many more…

Search now.....