India not to drag EU to WTO over mango ban

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on March 12, 2018

Anand Sharma, Commerce Minister (file photo)

Wants to sort out issue through consultations

India will not drag the EU to the World Trade Organisation over the ban on some vegetables and fruits, including mangoes, but wants to settle the matter through discussion.

Commerce Secretary Rajeev Kher has written to the EU Director General (Trade) for consultations on the issue so that the ban gets lifted soon.

“EU’s action (ban) is premature and it shocked us because we believed that with the new procedures specified by us through notifications, its problems had been taken care of,” Kher said addressing a press conference on Thursday.

The EU’s Standing Committee on Plant Health imposed a ban on Indian mangoes, bitter gourd, taro, egg plant and snake gourd, as pests and insects were detected in a number of consignments shipped from the country. The ban is applicable from May 1.

Commerce Minister Anand Sharma has also written to the EU Trade Commissioner Karel De Gucht saying that the ban should be lifted.

The Commerce Secretary added that India would not approach the WTO to settle the issue as India and the EU were very strong trading partners and the country hoped to sort out the differences through dialogue.

India has now made it mandatory for exports of all perishable items to the European Union to be routed through recognised pack-houses under the vigilance of plant protection inspectors to minimise quality glitches.

“We want the DG (Trade) to now help us in navigating the situation so that the ban can be lifted at an early date,” Kher said.

The Agriculture and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA), in its notification, has specified that it is not only essential for pack houses to follow complete procedure for export of fruits and vegetables to the EU, it has to maintain records of arrival of material and actual shipped quantity and report it daily to the Government.

Published on May 01, 2014

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