"India-EU FTA must be fair, equitable and balanced": Piyush Goyal at CII event

World Thursday 22/February/2024 08:05 AM
"India-EU FTA must be fair, equitable and balanced": Piyush Goyal at CII event

New Delhi: Union Minister of Commerce and Industry, Piyush Goyal, said that the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) between India and the European Union has to be fair, equitable and balanced.

He was speaking at the Special Plenary Session of the second CII India Europe Business and Sustainability Conclave, held by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) in the national capital on Wednesday, informed an official press release.

"We believe that Free Trade Agreements or bilateral agreements have to be fair, equitable and balanced. Countries across the globe need to recognise that India as a rapidly growing country, is poised to become a USD 35 trillion economy by 2047," Goyal said at the event.

He also spoke about the past year of India's G20 presidency as a successful year including the launch of both the Global Biofuel Alliance and the India Middle-East Economic Corridor (IMEC), both of which will ensure growth and development across the globe, through transparent and fair trading systems.

Focusing on inclusivity and gender equality, Goyal said, "The nation is working towards not only the growth of women but also towards women-led development. As we collectively work towards expanding our international relations, we believe India with strong macroeconomic fundamentals and a large aspirational pool of young talent will continue to expand rapidly."

"Today we have a new sense of enthusiasm to manufacture in India, to design and innovate in India, to become a hub of economic activity for other parts of the world. We are for an India with a conducive business climate where we focus on ease of doing business, reducing compliances, and working in partnership with businesses across the world with a very strong and robust regulatory mechanism in place," he added.

The minister further elaborated on the plethora of opportunities in the various sectors across India.

'Be it modern technology, sustainability, RE, or circular economy, India is unlocking new frontiers and expanding its footprint across the globe," he said.

Goyal specifically mentioned the pharmaceutical sector, stating that India can go on to become the 'Pharmacy of the World' in a much bigger way by providing affordable medicines to the rest of the world.

Notably, the negotiations for an FTA between the EU and India were relaunched in 2022, marking a significant step in trade relations.

The Free Trade Agreement aims to eliminate trade barriers between participating countries, facilitate smoother import and export processes, and foster stronger trade relations.

The talks began in 2007 but were frozen in 2013. The decision to resume negotiations in 2021 reflects the shared commitment to deepen economic ties and promote free and hassle-free trade between the two major partners, the leaders noted.

The negotiations encompass a wide range of areas, including sustainability, labour standards, and environmental considerations, to ensure that trade benefits both parties without adverse impacts on the environment or labour rights.

The seventh round of talks between India and the EU delegation is underway.