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India cautious on RCEP

India cautious on RCEP

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Concern over Chinese exports

FICCI.

India is cautious in its approach to the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) which would leads to massive exports from China on lowered tariffs while disadvantaging Chinese protectionist policies.

“The big concerns of India are that we run an enormous trade deficit with China, which we believe is a result of unfair, restricted market access. It is the Chinese protectionist policies that have created this outcome,” said Foreign Minister Dr S. Jaishankar during the inaugural session of the India-Singapore Business & Innovation Summit held 9-10 September 2019.

India runs a massive trade deficit with China, accounting for more than 50% of the total trade.

Chinese exports dominate India-China bilateral trade which in 2017 was around US$84 billion.

India wants China to open its market to Indian pharma products and IT expertise.

The Minister highlighted the global success of Indian pharma industry while facing restrictions in the Chinese market.

Speaking at the summit on 9 September, Singapore Foreign Minister Vivian Balakrishnan had called on India to keep the faith with “the mother of all trade agreements”, which is approaching the final stretch of negotiations between Asean and its six trading partners.

RCEP will be a “game changer”, said Balakrishnan

“For India, China and South-east Asia, the key political question is, can we arrive at a formula that would expand a rising middle class and give their children a sense of optimism,” the Singapore Minister told some 4,000 delegates at the summit.

RCEP, nearing conclusion after six years of negotiations, aims to have India as partner along with China, Japan, South Korea, Australia and New Zealand as well as 10-country member ASEAN. fiinews.com

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