India and EU strike trade pact to help open doors for several domestic sectors: Piyush Goyal

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The proposed free trade agreement with the European Union, when implemented, will provide better market access for several national sectors such as textiles, leather and sporting goods in the EU market, Trade and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal said on Monday.

After a hiatus of more than eight years, India and the EU formally resumed negotiations on trade, investment and geographical indications (GIs) agreements on June 17.

The next round of negotiations will take place from June 27 to July 1 here.

India had started talks for a trade pact, dubbed the Bilateral Trade and Investment Agreement (BTIA), with the 27-nation economic bloc in 2007, but talks stalled in 2013 as the two sides failed to reach agreement on key issues, including customs. taxes on automobiles and spirits, and the movement of professionals.

Goyal said the EU is a big market with 27 prosperous countries. It is one of the largest trading blocs, holding a large share of the global market.

“This will open the doors, we believe, to our textiles, leather, pharmaceuticals, sporting goods, some agricultural products, handicrafts, looms. All of this will open a bigger market. Our exports will increase,” he said. told reporters here.

The EU, he said, has modern technologies, high-end precision equipment and “we will benefit from their modern technologies”.

Also in the services sector, both parties would have the opportunity to support each other and develop their trade.

“We will have a greater flow of investment from Europe. It will be a win-win situation for both countries,” he added.

India’s merchandise exports to EU member countries amounted to around USD 65 billion in 2021-22, while imports amounted to USD 51.4 billion.

A GI is mainly an agricultural, natural or manufactured product (artisanal and industrial products) originating in a specific geographical territory.

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