Union Minister of Commerce and Industry, Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution and Textiles, Piyush Goyal, will start his three-day visit to the United Kingdom on Monday with a focus on the Free Trade Agreement (FTA), Ministry of Commerce and Industry said in a release.
During his three-day visit from July 10-12, the Commerce Minister will meet ministers from the European Free Trade Association (EFTA) member countries to discuss the progress of the Trade and Economic Partnership Agreement (TEPA).
"The visit comes at a crucial juncture, as both India and the UK are committed to expanding their economic ties and exploring avenues for enhanced bilateral trade. With the FTA negotiations gaining momentum, the visit aims to further propel the discussions and pave the way for a comprehensive and mutually beneficial agreement that would drive economic growth and strengthen ties between the two nations," the official release read.
"During the visit, the Commerce and Industry Minister will engage in high-level meetings with his UK counterparts, including the Secretary of State for International Trade, as well as representatives from various sectors and industries. These meetings will provide an opportunity to discuss the key priorities and objectives of the FTA negotiations, with a focus on addressing trade barriers, promoting investments, and fostering greater cooperation in areas such as technology, innovation, and intellectual property rights," it added.
The India-UK bilateral trading relationship was worth Pound 34 billion in 2022, growing by Pound 10 billion ( Rs 102 crore) in one year, according to official UK government statistics.
During the visit, the minister is also expected to meet with the ministers and officials from the EFTA member countries, (Switzerland, Norway, Iceland, and Liechtenstein), to assess the progress made in the ongoing negotiations of the TEPA with EFTA.
European Free Trade Association (EFTA) is an intergovernmental organisation for the promotion and intensification of free trade. EFTA was founded as an alternative for states that did not wish to join the European Community (EC).
The TEPA aims to enhance trade and economic cooperation between India and the EFTA member countries, fostering an environment conducive to increased investments, reduced trade barriers, and greater market access.
The visit of the Commerce and Industry Minister underscores the commitment of the Indian government to actively engage with its international partners and explore opportunities for economic growth and development.
It reflects the determination to forge strong and mutually beneficial trade relationships that will not only benefit the economies of both India and the UK but also contribute to the overall prosperity and welfare of their respective citizens, as per the statement.
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