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India and EU re-launch negotiations for Free Trade agreement

India and the European Union have formally re-launched the negotiations for a Free trade agreement after a gap of nine long years. The negotiations were also launched for a stand-alone Investment Protection agreement and geographical Indicators agreement. The launching was done at a joint event held at the European Union Headquarters at Brussels on June 17th in the presence of Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal and Executive Vice President of the EU Mr Valdis Dombrovskis

Indian and EU leaders had reached an agreement held at Porto in last may for resuming negotiations for a balanced, ambitious, comprehensive and mutually beneficial Free Trade Agreement and starting fresh negotiations on the Investment Protection Agreement and a separate agreement on Geographical Indicators. 

The negotiations between India and EU on free trade agreement have been going on for decades but were formally called off way back in 2013 due to differences in the scope and expectations from the deal.  The negotiations are resuming after a gap of about nine years now.

The Delhi visit of the European Commission President Ms. Ursula von der Leyen in April 2022, and the Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s recent visit to Europe accelerated the Free Trade Agreement discussions and helped in defining a clear roadmap for the negotiations.

This would be one of the most significant FTAs for India as EU is its second largest trading partner after the US.

 The India-EU merchandise trade has registered an all-time high value of  116.36 Billion US dollars in 2021-22 with a year-on growth of 43.5 per cent.  India’s export to the EU jumped 57 per cent in FY 2021-22 to 65 billion US dollars.  India has a surplus trade with EU.

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