World Trade Organization signs a momentous agreement


Posted on 17 June 2022


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In the early hours of Friday in Geneva, the 164 member countries of the World Trade Organization (WTO) finally signed a package of trade accords, with India leading the way. The agreements reached at the WTO's 12th ministerial meeting were hammered out over days of round-the-clock negotiations, and they mark the first substantial accord in nine years. Pledges on food security, a fair outcome on fisheries subsidies, and pandemic response are all included in the series of trade agreements, all of which are vital to developing countries. A significant judgement on a patent waiver for Covid-19 vaccines is also due soon, but the US has yet to formally seal it. Prime Minister Narendra Modi, according to officials, actively oversaw deliberations at the Geneva ministerial. With problematic phrases deleted from the document at the last minute, India defended its right to offer subsidies to its fishermen. In exchange, India agreed to an 18-month extension of the customs duty moratorium on electronic goods, which it claims benefits wealthy countries.


Key Points


  • In the early hours of Friday in Geneva, the 164 member countries of the World Trade Organization (WTO) finally signed a package of trade accords, with India leading the way.

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi, according to officials, actively oversaw deliberations at the Geneva ministerial.


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