Trade and Economic Engagement Plan for India, Latin American and Caribbean Countries

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Trade and Economic Engagement Plan for India, Latin American and Caribbean Countries

Recently, the External Affairs Minister also suggested a four-pillar plan for deeper trade and economic engagement.

The plan aims to double India and Latin American and Caribbean (LAC) bilateral trade to $100 billion by 2027.

The scheme is based on the following pillars –

  1. Diversifying supply chains.
  2. Sharing of resources: While LAC countries can help meet India’s growing demand for oil, gas and strategic minerals, Indian goods and services can meet the needs of the middle class in LAC countries.
  3. Sharing of development experiences: These include digital capabilities, health care solutions, agricultural practices, etc.
  4. Addressing Global Challenges: These challenges include climate change, concerns of the Global South and reform of multilateral fora.

LAC includes about 44 countries including Mexico. This group covers a wide range from the Bahamas and Mexico to Argentina and Chile.

Significance of India – LAC Relations:

  • They have high potential for bilateral trade and investment,
  • Good relations between India and these countries are important for promoting South-South cooperation,
  • At the strategic level, the LAC area can be an important source of supply of minerals like copper, lithium etc. for India.

Steps taken by India

  • Preferential trade agreements (PTAs) have been made with the Southern Common Market (MERCOSUR) and Chile.
  • Lines of Credit have been extended to several countries along the LAC under India’s development partnership initiative.
  • In 1997, the FOCUS Latin America and the Caribbean (FOCUS LAC) program was launched. It has been expanded from time to time.

Source – Economics Times

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