The UK kick-starts preparation for trade negotiations with India

By: |
May 25, 2021 4:29 PM

The consultation, which will start from May 25-August 31, 2021, is expected to seek views from the " public and businesses and ensure a deal is tailored to UK interests".

The public consultation, which runs to August 31, includes a questionnaire that will gather information from participants about their experiences and priorities when doing business with India.The public consultation, which runs to August 31, includes a questionnaire that will gather information from participants about their experiences and priorities when doing business with India.

India and the UK have started their 14 week consultation for the free trade agreement between the two countries.

The consultation, which will start from May 25-August 31, 2021, is expected to seek views from the ” public and businesses and ensure a deal is tailored to UK interests”.

In an official statement shared by the UK High Commission, New Delhi, on Tuesday, “The negotiations for the UK-India Free Trade Agreement is expected to start in autumn.” The views of the public and businesses will help in ensuring a deal which is going to be tailored to the interests of the UK. There will be a questionnaire which will help in gathering information who will be participating in sharing their experiences when doing business with India.

How will the trade deal help?

As has been reported in Financial Express Online earlier, with a Free Trade Agreement in place, the iconic Scotch whisky might make an entry in India. An agreement between the two will help in boosting trade in science and services, and in also creating jobs across the country.

In the UK on Tuesday (May 25, 2021), the preparations for the agreement were launched by the Trade Secretary Liz Truss.

What is the UK looking for in this deal?

For India’s £2 trillion economy and market of 1.4 billion consumers, the UK is seeking removal of barriers to doing business and this also includes the removal of tariffs of up to 150% on whisky and 125% on British-made cars.

The inputs are expected to help the UK to make a deal which will focus on closer cooperation in future-focused industries such as science, technology and services, creating high-value jobs across the country.

Also, in an effort to boost the UK as a gateway to the international market, the aim is to make it easier for services firms to operate in the Indian market.

Also growing middle-income population and highly connected youth of India are going to be the target consumers for the type of goods and services the UK excels in.

What did the International Trade Secretary Liz Truss say?

“We’re firing the starting gun on a free trade deal with India – the world’s largest democracy, fifth biggest economy, a nation of 1.4 billion people and a huge market for British goods like whisky, cars and services.”

According to him the FTA will break down the barriers and it will be easier for the British businesses and also help in securing more investments, better jobs, higher wages, and there will be more choice and it will lower prices in the UK.

Why the consultations now ahead of the G-7 meeting?

The Enhanced Trade Partnership (ETP) has been agreed by both countries on May 4, at the end of the virtual summit level meeting between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson. Both countries have also launched a ‘2030 Roadmap’. This will provide a framework for UK-India relations.

Earlier this month, both countries have agreed to implement a `Early Market Access’ package for sectors which includes fruits, shrimps, nursing and medical devices.

The Enhanced Trade Partnership will more than double two-way trade by 2030, and further strengthen the bilateral relations between the two countries as well as the trade.

What has the UK agreed to open up?

The fisheries sector, mainly shrimps. To facilitate more opportunities for nurses; recognise Indian seafarers certificates. And to also enter into a joint dialogue on the Social Security Agreement.

India has agreed to …

To the UK’s demands on more market access for fruits, and medical devices. And to mutually recognise masters degrees and to work towards reciprocal opening of legal services.

These steps will help in generating 20,000-25,000 new direct and indirect jobs in India.

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