Parliamentary committee signs free trade agreements with major trading partners

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Recently Parliamentary Committee has urged to address the issues hindering the signing of Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) with major trading partners.

The Parliamentary Standing Committee on Commerce has released a report titled ‘Augmenting Infrastructure Facilities to Boost Exports’. In this report, the Committee has expressed the view that the FTA should be signed while balancing the interests of the domestic market and the exporters.

An Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) is an agreement signed between two or more countries to reduce barriers to imports and exports.

Key concerns highlighted by the Parliamentary Committee (PSC)

  • Registering a negative growth rate of 15.73% in the year 2020, India’s exports have contracted as compared to the year 2019-20.
  • The budget allocation for the Remission of Duties and Taxes on Exported Products (RoDTEP) scheme is inadequate to meet its objectives.
  • Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) have not been done with US and EU countries. Because of this, when domestic exporters compete with other exporting countries, they face losses in the US and European markets.

Key Recommendations

  • India should intensify efforts in export promotion, expand export basket and enter new export markets to overcome the current slowdown and increase its share in global exports.
  • The issues that hinder the signing of the FIA ​​with the US and the EU must be addressed.
  • The RoDTEP scheme should provide an extension for at least five year, or till India’s interest rates are at par with the interest rates of competing countries.

Source – The Hindu

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