Fri. Mar 5th, 2021
India, EU express hope to forge host of bilateral cooperation arrangements

India and the European Union (EU) on Friday expressed hope to forge a host of bilateral cooperation arrangements with a view to boost bilateral trade. At a bilateral meeting with the EU, India shared structural reforms priorities of the country and various steps taken to revive economy hit by COVID-19 crisis. During the 11th India-EU Macroeconomic dialogue held virtually, the EU informed about the economic challenges and outlook of their economy due to the adverse impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and their recovery plan.
“The dialogue concluded with the hope that both sides would be able to build stronger and deeper relations by entering into various bilateral cooperation arrangements which are of mutual interest to both sides,” an official statement said. Both sides have been negotiating on the Bilateral Trade and Investment Agreement (BTIA) for many years but still not reached a consensus. The European Union is seeking greater market access for its automobiles, wines and spirits, and have raised concerns over high duties by India.

The Indian side, led by Economic Affairs Secretary Tarun Bajaj, shared fiscal policy response and medium-term fiscal strategy including financial/structural reforms priorities. “India shared its policy response to COVID-19 crisis and steps taken to revive the economy from COVID-19 impact including well calibrated stimulus packages announced by the Government of India as also the vaccination-related efforts,” an official statement said.

The delegation from the EU was led by Maarten Verwey, director general (economic and financial affairs) of European Commission, who informed about the economic challenges and outlook of their economy due to the adverse impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and the recovery plan. “India-EU relationship has evolved into a multifaceted partnership. Today, it covers all dimensions – political, economic, security, trade and investment, environment, research and innovation,” it said.

The 27-member EU is one of our largest trading partners, one of the largest investors in India and an important source for technology, innovation and best practices. The dialogue also covered sharing of their experiences to enable both sides on various aspects such as collaboration in the G20 on finance track matters, including through G20 Framework Working Group deliverables, and international taxation of digital economy, it said.

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