Russia offered assistance in reaching a compromise on Bali package


On December 4 as a part of 9th Ministerial Conference of the World Trade Organization held on the Indonesian island of Bali, the Minister of Economic Development Alexey Ulyukaev held a working meeting with Indian Minister of Trade Anand Sharma.

- Russia is ready to assist in reaching a compromise on food security, said the head of the Russian body in the discussion with his Indian counterpart of positions of some countries in this regard.

India says it wants to buy their products from farmers in the reserve at a fixed price. Several countries have made ​​concessions to these requirements and invited India to buy such goods, provided that it does not further export them and limits for further action before the 11th Conference of the WTO, which will be held in four years.

“If the Bali package is adopted, then India will receive the best conditions to support farmers than now. They are invited for four years to have the opportunity to act as they want, and then come back to this issue. We believe it is a compromise, but the matter is still not resolved yet. This is bargaining, everyone is always trying to get something for itself till the last moment, said Alexey Ulyukaev.

Nevertheless, as was noted by Indian Minister of Trade Anand Sharma, Delhi rejected the temporary offer. "This decision is final, he said. Agriculture is the source of life for millions of farmers existing on the edge, whose interests shall be protected.”

So-called Bali package contains trade procedures facilitation, a set of documents on the limitation of export subsidies and support program for agriculture, and food security, including restrictions on procurement of goods for state needs.

Since WTO decisions are taken only under the consensus of all participants of the meeting, delegations from 130 countries out of 159 that arrived at the conference, have taken the time to conduct informal consultations.