Refuting a misconception that India offers subsidies to exporters, Commerce and Industry Minister Suresh Prabhu recently said the government is trying to create enabling factors to ‘partially offset’ the lacunae in infrastructure and other adversities to help exporters access global markets. That in no way violates the global trading system, he clarified. He was addressing an award function organised by the Shellac and Forest Products Export Promotion Council (SHEFEXIL) recently, according to a report. The United States has dragged India to the World Trade Organisation’s (WTO) dispute settlement mechanism over the issue of export subsidies.
At another event organised by the Federation of Indian Export Organisations (FIEO) on the same day, Prabhu said global trade has been facing ‘challenging times’ and WTO’s existence is under ‘threat’ as people question accepted trading norms. He stated that the government is trying to work out a lot of bilateral trade agreements, especially with Latin American countries, Africa, countries of the Commonwealth of Independent States and the Gulf Coordination Council countries. The United Kingdom is also eager to get into a trade agreement with India, post BREXIT, a FIEO quoted the Minister as saying.