India to activate working groups to benefit India-US trade ties

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These working groups would be created for sectors such as agriculture, non-agriculture goods, services, investment, and intellectual property, said a Ministry of Commerce …reports Asian Lite News

The Centre said on Tuesday that it would “activate” working groups to address mutual concerns of India-US bilateral trade.

The decision was taken at the 12th ministerial-level meeting of the ‘India-United States Trade Policy Forum’, chaired by Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal and USTR Ambassador Katherine Tai.

Accompanied by Deputy US Trade Representative Sarah Bianchi, Tai is on her two-day visit to India that was started yesterday. This is Tai’s first visit to India after she took over office in March this year.

These working groups would be created for sectors such as agriculture, non-agriculture goods, services, investment, and intellectual property, said a Ministry of Commerce statement, adding that these groups will meet “frequently” and chalk out a plan of action by March 2022.

In the period between January and September, India-US bilateral merchandise trade grew 50 per cent compared to the same period previous year, and the same is poised to surpass the $100 billion-mark, the statement said.

The meeting emphasised on “achieving a shared vision of a transparent, rules-based global trading system among market economies and democracies,” the statement added.

In addition, the meeting focused on participation and collaboration of the private sector in both countries in building stronger linkages in critical sectors such as “cyberspace, semiconductors, Artificial Intelligence, 5G, 6G and future generation telecommunications technology, and supporting resilient and secure global supply chains”.

In the agriculture sector, there was an agreement on market access facilitation for mangoes, grapes, pomegranates, pomegranate arils from India, and cherries, alfalfa hay, pork and pork products from the US.

Meanwhile, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar said that he held a good conversation with Katherine Tai on global trade challenges and the need to build reliable and resilient supply chains.

He also said that expanding economic and technology cooperation is at the heart of the strategic partnership between India and the United States.

“Enjoyed meeting USTR @AmbassadorTai. Good conversation on global trade challenges and the need to build reliable and resilient supply chains. Expanding economic and technology cooperation is at the heart of our strategic partnership,” Jaishankar tweeted.

On Monday, Tai also met Commerce Secretary BVR Subrahmanyam.

The US trade representative also said that trade relations with India are the top priority for President Joe Biden. “The trade relationship between our two countries is a priority, both for President Biden and for me. That’s why it was important for me to come to India and relaunch the Trade Policy Forum (TPF) on my first trip to Asia,” she said. (IANS/ANI)

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