Trade Deal With US On The Cards, Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal Set To Meet US Trade Representative On 13 November

Prime Minister Narendra Modi with Commerce Minister, Piyush Goyal. (Virendra Singh Gosain/Hindustan Times via GettyImages) 

Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal will meet US Trade Representative (USTR) Ambassador Robert Lighthizer on 13 November for bilateral trade discussions and to arrive at a shared understanding on a possible trade deal.

Post walking out of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) pact, India will have talks with the United States which had hit a rough patch on tariff and market access issues in September.

"Goyal will have a bilateral meeting with his counterpart Ambassador Lighthizer to discuss outstanding bilateral issues and to arrive at a shared understanding on a mutually beneficial basis on November 13 2019," an official statement said.


The meeting will be a forum to thrash out the pending issues for the proposed trade deal. As per sources, the limited trade agreement could incorporate some concessions for US farm products, pricing of medical devices like stents and lower import duty on Harley Davidson motorcycles and these could be in exchange for full restoration of duty-free benefits for India's exports.

US President Donald Trump in the past has slammed India many times over high import duty on Harley Davidson bikes. The motorcycle tariffs have led to Trump repeatedly terming New Delhi a "high-tariff nation" and importantly Trump sees the Harley bike as a "true American icon".

During a six-day tour, Goyal will also participate in 9th BRICS Trade Ministers Meet in Brasilia. BRICS Trade Ministers Meeting will be focussed on opportunities for enhanced intra-BRICS trade and investment cooperation.

Issues like cooperation in e-commerce, investment facilitation, MSMEs, and Intellectual Property Rights will be discussed during the meet. Deliberations on the current global economic and trade environment, challenges facing the multilateral trading system, ways of advancing the BRICS trade and investment cooperation will also take place, the statement said.

Another outcome of the ministerial meeting under the current Brazilian presidency is the signing of an MoU among Trade and Investment Promotion Agencies of BRICS countries, which will help foster close collaboration between the BRICS nations for promoting intra BRICS trade and investment, it added.

On 14 November, Goyal will hold high-level interactions with business and industry representatives in New York.

(This story has been published from a wire agency feed without modifications to the text. Only the headline has been changed.)

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