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Some WTO nations question India's farm input subsidies

'India explained that the input subsidies are mainly for power, irrigation, and fertilizers and that the increase was due to inflation and rising costs of fertilizers. It insisted that the information had been duly notified to the WTO,' the Geneva-based official said.
Last Updated : 27 May 2024, 20:26 IST
Last Updated : 27 May 2024, 20:26 IST

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New Delhi: Some WTO members, including the US and the UK, have raised questions on India's USD 48 billion farm input subsidies for 2022-23, which according to New Delhi has increased due to inflation and rising costs of fertilisers, an official said.

The issue was flagged by these members of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) during a meeting of the committee on agriculture on May 23-24.

"India explained that the input subsidies are mainly for power, irrigation, and fertilizers and that the increase was due to inflation and rising costs of fertilizers. It insisted that the information had been duly notified to the WTO," the Geneva-based official said.

The 166-member WTO is a global trade body. It also adjudicates trade disputes between the member countries.

India has notified these numbers to the WTO in April. Under WTO rules of special and differential treatment, developing member countries are allowed to provide these subsidies to low-income or resource-poor farmers.

"India's new notification on its input subsidies for 2022-2023, totalling USD 48 billion USD, triggered questions from Canada, Brazil, Australia, the EU, Japan, the UK, and the US," the official said.

The US claimed that this amount is more than twice the value of all trade-distorting support notified by the US in 2021-22. In 2021-22, India has provided these support measures worth USD 32.07 billion. India has time and again pitched for reducing subsidies given by developed countries to their rich farmers.

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Published 27 May 2024, 20:26 IST

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