Steps taken to bring down Inflation: G K Pillai

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Mumbai, Aug 22: Union Secretary for Commerce, G K Pillai on Friday, Aug 22 hinted a possible decline in inflation rate that touched a 13-year high of 12.63 per cent in the week ending August 9. Speaking to newsmen on the sidelines of an international conference on Special Economic Zones (SEZ) here, he said that the cabinet committee on prices was closely reviewing the situation periodically and steps were being initiated to contain the prices.

Mr Pillai said wheat and rice was available in adequate quantity and even pulses and oils position was comfortable. The government was also releasing edible oil on subsidised rates. He expressed confidence that the inflation rate would come down.

On India resuming negotiations in the World Trade Organisation, Mr Pillai said that the Indian government was waiting for the response from WTO Chief Pascal Lamy, who was currently in Washington. India would respond to resumption of talks only after the reaction from Washington, he said.

Mr Lamy was in New Delhi last week in an attempt to restart the Doha talks which collapsed in Geneva in July. Talks in Geneva between 30 key trade ministers collapsed particularly after the US and India, failed to agree over operationalisation of ''special safeguard mechanism'' that would have enabled the developing countries to raise tariffs to protect poor farmers to counter surge in imports.

While US wanted the protection trigger to be used after 40 per cent surge in imports, India said that it was willing to go up to 10 per cent.

UNI

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