India, EU carry on talks for free trade pact

New Delhi: In a bid to boost economic relations between the two regions, India and the European Union (EU) on Monday resumed negotiations, after a gap of over eight years, for a comprehensive free trade agreement, a move aimed at strengthening economic relations between the two regions, the Ambassador of the European Union to India and Bhutan, said. Senior officials from both sides will hold discussions till July 1.

On June 17, formal negotiations on the proposed trade, investment, and Geographical Indications agreements between India and the 27-nation bloc were resumed.

India and the EU had begun trade talks in 2007, but they came to a halt in 2013 because neither side could agree on crucial points, such as the mobility of professionals and the customs tariffs on alcohol and vehicles.

Piyush Goyal, India's minister of commerce and industry, had said in Brussels on June 18 that India wanted to interact with the world about modern products and consider areas where it could benefit from new technology and investments.

In 2021–22, India's merchandise exports to EU members were around USD 65 billion, while its total imports were USD 51.4 billion.

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