Unaddressed concerns drove India out of RCEP

Minister of External Affairs, S Jaishankar, said that India’s withdrawal from the new regional trade bloc, the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), did not represent India’s “generic position” on trade matters. India pulled out of RCEP citing reservations that goods manufactured by China could come into India through other member countries under the RCEP, exacerbating its already skewed trade with China.

The minister affirmed that if the European Union was willing to give India a better deal, India would certainly consider it. (Negotiations of India with EU came to a halt in 2013.) “On our side there was (interest in) can we do an early harvest sectoral kind of agreement. So I think there are conversations going on…As foreign minister I would say that I would certainly like to see a fair and balanced FTA with Europe because when I look at the world … there is political multipolarity but there is economic multipolarity as well that changes for different countries,” he said.


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