India opposes move to link gender with trade

India, an influential member of the World Trade Organisation, was amongst the minority that chose not to endorse a declaration seeking women’s economic empowerment in trade, despite nearly three-fourths of the members backing the same. India stated that while it supports gender equality, it could not submit that gender is a trade-related issue. Further, Indian officials expressed their apprehensions that advanced countries would not only use their high standards in gender-related policies to curb exports from developing countries, but also indirectly restrict the developing world from incentivizing their women citizens as part of measures to address development challenges.