The European Union and India launched negotiations on a bilateral free trade and investment agreement in June 2007. However, between the governments, a number of controversies have been plaguing the talks. Delhi wants Brussels to relax its stringent food safety criteria which penalise Indian farm and fishery exports and to make it easier for Indian professionals to work in the EU. Europe is primarily out to win major openings of India’s services sector and broad liberalisation of foreign investment, while India does not want to discuss allowing European firms to compete in India’s government procurement market.
Indian social movements, including fisherfolk and labour unions, people living with HIV/AIDS and other health activists have been mobilizing against the FTA. International actions and campaigns have particularly targeted the proposed intellectual property provisions of the agreement, and the impact of the FTA on access to medicines.
last update: May 2012
Senior officials of India and European Union (EU) held detailed discussions on the long stalled negotiations for a proposed free trade agreement and updated each other on their positions, a government official said.
Officials from the European Union (EU) and India are expected to meet in Brussels on April 12th to resume technical talks on the long-stalled EU-India free trade agreement (FTA). A leaked draft of the agreement, which has been under discussion since 2007, contains proposals from the EU that push for intellectual property (IP) provisions in the FTA that could jeopardize access to affordable medicines.
Senior officials from the India and EU are meeting in Brussels this week to try and revive the negotiations, which have been stalled for long. Substantial difference and open questions remain, but it looks like Brussels and the Asian giant are closer than even before.
Senior officials of India and European Union (EU) will meet in Brussels next week to deliberate upon the long stalled negotiations for a proposed free trade agreement and update each other on their positions, a government official said.
India’s Commerce and Industry Minister Suresh Prabhu today indicated the resumption of negotiations of the long-stalled free trade pact between India and the European Union.
India and the European Union will discuss next month resumption of the much-delayed Bilateral Trade and Investment Agreement (BTIA) that hasn’t progressed much over the past five years.
India, EU negotiators met informally for one round of talks on the free trade agreement in November and expert-level contacts were on, EU’s ambassador to India Tomasz Kozlowski said.
Launched in June 2007, the negotiations for the proposed BTIA have witnessed many hurdles with both sides having major differences on key issues like IPR, duty cut in automobile and spirits, and liberal visa regime.
India, EU chief trade negotiators will meet next week in New Delhi to hammer out a way forward for the long-pending free trade agreement negotiations between the two sides.
EU official says goal is to have a ’broad, deep, comprehensive and ambitious’ FTA.