Press Releases

  • India's Green Business Prospects

    India has all the constituents to emerge as one of the biggest exporter in the ever-growing business of environmental goods and services. Union Minister of State for Commerce and Industry, Mr Rajiv Pratap Rudy said that low manufacturing costs, 100% foreign direct investment (FDI) and the growing awareness of the people about environmental issues formed the right recipe for a robust industry in this field. "Environmental concerns in India are growing on account of people's concerns, improved governmental regulations and judicial intervention. We have already permitted 100 per cent FDI in these sectors. A number of environmental goods attract lower duties. We see the ongoing ministerial negotiations at the World Trade Organization (WTO) as an opportunity for better access to environmental goods and services," he said.

    Inaugurating a seminar on Trade Liberalization in Environmental Goods and Services, here today, the minister said that the current negotiation in WTO on environmental goods was focused on identifying such goods. Today, developed nations are offering end-of-the-pipe pollution control equipment, renewable energy equipment etc. And developing countries are the net importers of them. "We, however, have to ensure that this process of liberalization doesn't hurt our domestic industry. And there is a need to balance the trade by allowing improved market access to developing countries," he said.

    The one-day seminar, jointly organized by The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI), Ministry of Commerce and UNCTAD discussed the business possibilities for all stakeholders in the WTO. Welcoming the delegates to the seminar, Dr R K Pachauri, Director-General, TERI said an overall view needed to be taken considering the beneficial impact on environment, the trade impact on domestic manufacturers and the other aspects of the Doha round of negotiations. "Developing countries have their own special problems which need to be carefully considered if trade is going to lead to sustainable development in all its dimensions," he said. He also said that if there were any imposition of environmental conditionalities, then Indian and other developing countries should take the stand that the global environment should also be considered.

    Mr S N Menon, Additional Secretary, Ministry of Commerce and Industry observed that a balance had to be struck in the negotiations so that the concerns of the developing countries are not marginalized. He said there was a need for reciprocity in concession issues with developing nations.

    Dr Veena Jha, of UNCTAD said the WTO issues should be simplified and conveyed to a wider audience in the country so that more and more people woke up to the issues and opportunities involving multilateral trade.