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Commerce Minister emphasises reciprocal market access for Indian goods


The Union Minister of Commerce and Industry and Railways, Mr Piyush Goyal, held a series of bilateral talks with a number of countries on the sidelines of the two-day G20 Ministerial on Trade and Digital Economy in Tsukuba, Ibaraki, Japan on June 8-9, 2019.


During the bilateral meetings with host Japan and countries like the US, the UK, China, France, Singapore, Korea, Spain, Canada, EU, Mexico, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Chile and Australia, Mr Goyal emphasised the need for reciprocal market access for Indian products.


He said that the slowdown in global trade and investment is of serious concern to all as it adversely affects economic growth, development and job creation. He called for de-escalating trade tensions and reviving confidence in the rules-based multilateral trading system which all countries had so painstakingly created.


The Commerce Minister said that while India is committed to working towards building free trade that is inclusive and development-centric, to bring prosperity to people around the world, focus on the imperatives of meeting the goals of SDGs, and eliminating poverty and deprivation must not be lost.


He further reiterated that with the advent of digital technologies, services are vital drivers of growth. Servicification of the manufacturing sector is enhancing the importance of services in global trade. Major investment is also being driven by the services sector. Thus, it is important to remove barriers and facilitate temporary movement of highly skilled professionals to sustain this investment and growth.


He pointed out that another way to go about correcting this, is by supporting greater participation of MSMEs in developing countries, both in domestic and global trade, because they are crucial for jobs and income generation. He urged G20 to provide preferential market access to MSMEs in developing countries to be part of the global supply chains.


For the first time, a joint session with Ministers of digital economy and trade and investment was held in G20 to discuss the interface between digital economy and trade. Mr Goyal represented India in both the joint sessions.


In his address, he said that there is no doubt that digital technologies are impacting our economies in a significant way and nations that fail to adapt to these changing realities run the risk of being left behind. Technologies can be disruptive if not harnessed in the right time.


The deliberations on trade, investment and digital economy will feed into the Osaka Summit Declaration which will be adopted on June 29, 2019, said a release.


Source : Exim News Service - New Delhi, June 11


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