New Delhi: India and the European Union have concluded the first round of negotiations for India-EU trade and investment agreements, including the Geographical Indicators (GI), an official statement said here on Saturday.
India’s FTA negotiations were led by Chief Negotiator Nidhi Mani Tripathi, Joint Secretary, Department of Commerce, and the EU was represented by its Chief Negotiator Christophe Kiener.
The week-long negotiations were held in a hybrid fashion – with some of the teams meeting in Delhi and the majority of officials joining virtually. During this Round 52, technical sessions covering 18 policy areas of FTA and seven sessions on Investment Protection and GIs were held.
The second round of negotiations is scheduled to take place in September 2022 in Brussels.
The negotiations were launched by Union Minister for Commerce & Industry Piyush Goyal and European Commission Executive Vice-President Valdis Dombrovskis in Brussels last month.
India’s bilateral trade with the EU amounted to 116.36 billion dollars in 2021-22. Despite global disruptions, bilateral trade achieved impressive annual growth of 43.5 percent in 2021-22.
Currently, the EU is India’s second-largest trading partner after the US and the second-largest destination for Indian exports. The trade agreement with the EU would help India in further expanding and diversifying its exports of goods and services, including securing the value chains.
Both sides were aiming for trade negotiations to be broad-based, balanced, and comprehensive, based on the principles of fairness and reciprocity.