India may breach AMS commitments with the implementation of Food subsidy scheme: WTO

The newly-elected Director-General of WTO, Roberto Azevedo has asserted that India would soon be breaching its Aggregate Measurement of Support (AMS) commitments to WTO (World Trade Organization) due to its new food security programme and has sought a positive solution to the issue before the Bali Ministerial to be held in December 2013 as some nations had expressed concern over the procurement and distribution of highly subsidized food-grains.

India has asked the WTO to work out a solution to win legitimacy for its ambitious food security law that promised highly subsidised food-grains to rural and urban poor. It wants to carry on with the subsidy programme till a final solution is found. India is also ready so sign the Peace Clause in Article 13 of the Agreement On Agriculture (AOA) as an interim mechanism till an acceptable final solution is arrived at. India is also ready to commit that procured food-grains would not be released for international trade and the management of public stocks would be done in a transparent manner.

It must be recalled that the current India government is implementing the Food Security Act which entitles 82 crore people to 5 kg of food-grains per person in a month at the rate of Rs.1-3 a kg. The country needs 62 million tonnes of food-grains in a year to implement the law.

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