India in the Doha Development Round

University essay from Lunds universitet/Statsvetenskapliga institutionen

Abstract: This thesis attempts to answer the question why there was a breakdown in talks between India and the USA over the issue Special Safeguard Mechanism (SSM), at the WTO Ministerial Conference in Geneva in July 2008. This is done through Robert Putnams’ two-level game framework, which is applied to the interplay between India’s diplomacy and domestic politics. The thesis concludes that the underdeveloped agriulture and the poverty of the farmers in India, together with the persistence of developed countries’ agriultural subsidies, made further Indian concessions on the mentioned issue impossible. This suggests that the developed world misjudged Indian resolve in the negotiations and has paid too little attention to the situation of Indian farmers. Towards the end it is argued that the developed countries must adress Indian concerns and phase out their agricultural subsidies if a future multilateral free trade agreement is to be reached.

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