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  • Corporate must seek tough govt purchase order norms: Com Min

    Published on August 19, 2010

    Peeved that corporates in India have to face tough norms in global government purchase orders totalling an estimated USD 3 trillion, the Commerce Ministry has suggested that the industry too should root for similar norms back home.

    “I (India) have given my market to everbody in the globe, …(but) I do not get access in their (Western) government purchase, what do I do?” Additional Secretary in Commerce Ministry D K Mittal said at a Ficci function in New Delhi.

    India, however, has not yet taken up this issue at the relevant World Trade Organisation forum, he admitted and said that feedback from the industry could equip the government to act aptly.

    “I think as part of a strategy the corporates should demand that we (India) should put the same conditions (as in government purchases of Western countries),” he said.

    “We need feedback from you (industry) so that as and when we want to go and negotiate in WTO, this agreement… we can do negotiation for the country and you better,” Mittal said.

    India could approach the WTO on this issue only by joining the Government Procurement Ageement (GPA), a panel consisting of countries like the US, EU and Japan, and such a development could help corporate here by way of global access to USD 2-3 trillion market of government purchases.

    India, at present, is an observer at the GPA which has about 40 members including the US, EU and Japan.

    Acceptance of GPA membership would necessitate changes in politically sensitive procurement polices including the preferential pricing policies favouring small scale sector.

    “In India, we have policies which give price preference to small-scale sectors…now these are the kind of policies which will come under attack if we sign the GPA,” Mittal said.

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