Dairy players oppose free trade pact with EU

Joseph B. Hash

Even as the Centre is inching closer to signal a Absolutely free Trade Arrangement (FTA) offer with the European Union (EU), India’s dairy sector has flagged some issues involving livelihood scores of Indian farmers. The inclusion of dairy goods in the FTA is feared to hamper farmers’ pursuits and stymie […]

Even as the Centre is inching closer to signal a Absolutely free Trade Arrangement (FTA) offer with the European Union (EU), India’s dairy sector has flagged some issues involving livelihood scores of Indian farmers.

The inclusion of dairy goods in the FTA is feared to hamper farmers’ pursuits and stymie Government’s endeavours to strengthen dairy exports from India, they claimed.

Dairy main and Amul marketer Gujarat Cooperative Milk Advertising Federation Ltd (GCMMF) has created a letter to the Union Commerce Ministry stating that opening up Indian market place for European dairies will consequence into subsidising elite shoppers at the cost of Indian farmers.

“Our largest issue is that EU has export subsidy for their dairies, thus supplying double subsidy to farmers and dairies. If they enter the Indian market place less than FTA, it will damage the Indian dairy farmers. We have created to the Union Ministry trying to get to retain dairy out of the FTA negotiations,” RS Sodhi advised BusinessLine.

In the letter dated March 22, GCMMF has mentioned that there is no case to even more subsidise import of dairy goods these kinds of as Skimmed Milk Powder (SMP) as it is currently permitted for import less than Tariff Price Quota (TRQ) of 10,000 tonnes at 15 for every cent responsibility from the prevailing 60 for every cent.

“SMP is dried kind of milk and is immediate substitute of milk. Therefore it has immediate influence on the milk made in India,” the letter argued.

Cheese imports

On the chance of cheese imports from Europe, Sodhi said that although its imports are permitted at 30 for every cent responsibility with no any limits, a majority of this is gourmand cheese variety. “Against this, similar goods are made by more than 15 crore poor dairy farmers of India for their livelihoods. As a result, any concession in higher-close goods like cheese would show to be concession offered to elite shoppers at the cost of poor farmers,” Sodhi mentioned in the letter.

Top private dairy player Parag Milk Food items Limited’s Chairman Devendra Shah mentioned the FTA transfer will damage dairy producers’ pursuits as it will consequence into dumping of the more affordable dairy goods from Europe.

“When there would be more affordable materials of cheese out there in the global markets, there would be a temptation for other private players to source instantly from there. This will eventually damage India’s own dairy farming,” Shah mentioned, adding that the transfer wanted a reconsideration.

On the one hand, the Authorities has inspired dairy goods exports with mozzarella cheese by way of performance-connected incentive schemes, on the other, it has permitted responsibility concessions for import of cheese so defeating the incredibly function of the scheme.

India refrained from signing RCEP due to the fact of a similar threat of import of dairy goods from Australia and New Zealand. “EU is 5 instances greater producer and regulate similar market place share in the world-wide dairy trade. Therefore, India need to entirely oppose import of any of the dairy goods less than the HS code 0401 to 0406,” he extra in the request to the Authorities.

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