Andhra Pradesh Media Workshop
Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh, October 30, 2005
In keeping with the primary objective of GRANITE project of undertaking capacity building of relevant stakeholders on issues concerning WTO and globalisation, Consumer Guidance Society (CGS), Vijayawada – project partner for Andhra Pradesh – organised a capacity building workshop for media persons on October 30, 2005 at Administrative Staff College of India, Hyderabad. The meeting was organised in collaboration with Andhra Pradesh Union of Working Journalists (APUWJ).
The objective of the meeting was to interact with the media persons also in order to sensitise and capacitate them on the WTO and globalisation issues and their implications on the lives and livelihood of the people.
Highlights of the Workshop
Diwakar Babu, Consumer Guidance Society expressed the following viewpoints:
- WTO is a rule-based organisation.
- On a comparative basis, WTO is more democratic and participatory.
- Experience shows that developed countries are not interested in allowing free trade and are pushing for increasing protection for the benefit of their domestic sectors and industries under the camouflage of the vague provisions of WTO.
- Agreement on Agriculture (AoA) is a biased agreement, which is detrimental to the interests of the Indian agriculture.
K R Choudhary
- Huge subsidies given by the developed countries to their framers are causing problems for agriculture sector in developing countries.
- AoA is not in the interests of Indian farmers.
- In India, there was no prior discussion before joining WTO.
- There are wide variations in the subsidies provided by different countries for their farmers. Rich nations have been and will continue to provide huge subsidies, often 90 percent of the production cost. Indian farmers, with all their problems, will not be able to compete on these uneven terms.
- For this reason, there is no point in India being a member of WTO. We are losing and we will continue to lose.
D Narasimha Reddy, Nodal Person, GRANITE Andhra Pradesh
- Indian textile sector has strengths to compete in post – Agreement on Textiles & Clothing (ATC) scenario.
- It is the most diversified national sector in the entire world.
- Handloom is the main platform on which Indian textile sector has been built.
- While being within WTO offers opportunities, lobbying and competition within nation is leading to fissiparous policies to detrimental to the public interest and well being of the textile sector.
- The political economy of India has a new kind of turf, where ruling classes are deepening their economic roots by using WTO as a weapon. This needs to be subverted by public knowledge, consciousness and positive action.
- There were discussions on the queries raised by the participants on the presentations of the speakers.