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12/04/24 | 12:21 pm

Seventh round of the India-Peru trade agreement negotiations concludes in New Delhi

The seventh round of negotiations for the India-Peru Trade Agreement took place in New Delhi, from April 8 to April 11. These discussions were aimed at understanding each other’s priorities and concerns while ensuring mutual respect and benefits.

During the negotiations, Sunil Barthwal, Commerce Secretary, emphasized the longstanding diplomatic relations between India and Peru, dating back to the 1960s. He referred to the visit of Teresa Stella Mera Gomez, Vice Minister of Foreign Trade, Peru to India and highlighted the significance of bilateral discussions held during the 9th CII India-LAC Conclave in August 2023, which led to the resumption of negotiations.

Barthwal stressed the importance of understanding each other’s strengths and respecting sensitivities. He encouraged stakeholder consultations, feedback from the industry, and a gainful approach to negotiation.

Rajesh Agrawal, Chief Negotiator & Additional Secretary, Department of Commerce, said that holding two rounds of negotiation within two months is itself a testimony to the willingness between both countries to have a deeper economic cooperation. He emphasized the need for effective and fast-track negotiations.

In addition, Ambassador Javier Manuel Paulinich Velarde also expressed confidence in the outcomes of negotiations, emphasizing their role in fostering partnership.

G. V. Srinivas of the Ministry of External Affairs commended efforts to shorten the negotiation period. Peruvian Chief Negotiator Gerardo Antonio Meza Grillo highlighted the significance of resuming negotiations after 2019. He emphasized that the negotiating teams may show flexibility and pragmatism to reach mutual solutions.

Discussions during this round covered various chapters including Trade in Goods, Trade in Services, Movement of Natural Persons, Rules of Origin, Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures, Technical Barriers to Trade, Custom Procedures and Trade Facilitation, Initial Provisions and General Definitions, Legal and Institutional Provisions, Final Provisions, Trade Remedies, General and Security Exceptions, Dispute Settlement and Cooperation.

Around sixty delegates together from both sides participated in the negotiations.

The Peruvian delegation consisted of representatives from the Ministry of Foreign Trade and Tourism and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Peru.

The Indian delegates comprised the officials from the Department of Commerce, Directorate General of Foreign Trade, Department of Revenue, Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade, and the legal and economic resource persons.

India and Peru have seen significant growth in trade over the past two decades, the trade between India and Peru has increased from US$ 66 million in 2003 to around US$ 3.68 billion in 2023.

The next round of negotiations, expected in June 2024, will be preceded by intersessional discussions to resolve outstanding issues over video conferencing.

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