India remains committed to successful conclusion of Doha Round: PM

November 14th, 2007 - 3:03 am ICT by admin  
Inaugurating the Fortune Global Forum here, Singh said “without hesitation” that India is committed to the successful functioning of a rule based multilateral trading system.

“We do hope that the round keeps in mind the promised development dimension and that it also will addresses the concerns of millions of our subsistence farmers,” he said.

Singh further said that trade liberalization has contributed immensely to the country’s economic growth and to the growth of the world economy as a whole, adding that lowering trade barriers both at home and abroad has helped.

“Our enterprises have become more globally competitive. We shall persist on that path,” he added.

More importantly, he said, new business activities have grown in response to global opportunities. “The successes of our Information Technology, automobile and pharmaceutical sectors is a living testimony to the benefits that liberalization and globalisation have brought us,” he said.

Admitting that sometimes, it is worrisome to become more open, he said the lesson that must be drawn from the experience of the past century is that no country can reverse the dynamics of social, economic and technological change. “Rather we must learn to cope and adapt with change.”

“This is precisely why India chose to join the World Trade Organization (WTO). India is a founder member of GATT. You will recognize the fact that we have adhered to all our Uruguay Round commitments. In fact, our firms have benefited from these commitments. While we remain committed to these obligations, we must also explore ways in which developing countries can catch up in the race to modernization,” Singh said.

Pointing out that a trajectory where sustained annual economic growth of 9-10 percent- growth rates which were considered impossible even five years ago - seems possible for many years to come, Singh said this acceleration of economic growth over the past two decades has been driven by rising investment and savings rates, and by rising domestic consumption.

Singh went on to say that India’s “needs are immense” and in the next five years, “we need more than 450 billion dollars as investment in infrastructure alone. We see this coming from both domestic sources and from foreign investors.”

“As India grows, it seeks a wider engagement with the outside world, as an open market and as an open society. As a nation of young people, we view the world as a planet of opportunities. We are aware of the risks associated with processes of globalisation. But, we have the confidence to utilize the opportunities being created thereby. I believe that is the mood in India today. We do want to be more integrated with the global economy. This is the best way to expand our development possibilities,” he said.

He also said that the world today needs a new concord between private enterprise and public welfare.

He also spoke about climate change, saying India is “deeply and sincerely committed” to the protection of the environment because “we all share a single global environment.”

“The Indian approach to climate change and global warming derives from the ancient Hindu saying - vasudhaiva kutumbakam - ‘the whole universe is one family’,” he said. (ANI)

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