India against China-led investment facilitation proposal at WTO: Official | Business News – DollarJob

India against China-led investment facilitation proposal at WTO: Official | Business News


India has opposed efforts by 130 countries led by China to push a proposal on investment facilitation at the WTO on grounds that the agenda falls outside the mandate of the global trade body, a commerce ministry official said on Tuesday.

The official said that China-led group is pushing for the Investment Facilitation for Development (IFD) proposal that seeks to bring the proposal through annexure-4 of the WTO under which the proposal would be binding on only the signatory members and not on those who are opposed to it.

“We are against that also,” the official said, adding that India has opposed it as that would dilute the multilateral nature of the WTO. The official also said that if these countries want to negotiate the subject, they should do it outside the formal structure of the WTO.

India’s concern emanates from the fact that proponents of IFD should not be attempting to bring a “non-mandated, non-multilateral issue” to the formal process in the WTO. Such an attempt will be in violation of the WTO framework and fundamental rule of consensus-based decision-making.

There has not been any ministerial mandate for negotiations on investment-related matters, the official said.

Festive offer

While all decisions at the WTO happen through consensus, it also allows member countries to form a group and have agreements among themselves. Such pacts come under annexure 4 of the WTO that deals with plurilateral agreements.

The IFD was first mooted in 2017 by China and other countries who depend heavily on Chinese investments, and countries with sovereign wealth funds are party to that pact. Among major countries, the US is also sitting out of the agreement. Sri Lanka and Pakistan are also not part of it.


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