India seeks greater access in Japan,raises concerns over rising trade deficit

Amid talks of reviewing free trade agreements signed with several countries,India on Friday raised concerns over rising trade deficit with Japan,seeking more market access for its agricultural and marine products and pharmaceuticals.

Written by ENS Economic Bureau | New Delhi | Published: May 18, 2013 3:28 am

Amid talks of reviewing free trade agreements (FTAs) signed with several countries,India on Friday raised concerns over rising trade deficit with Japan,seeking more market access for its agricultural and marine products and pharmaceuticals.

In a meeting with Japanese foreign minister Fumio Kishida,commerce and industry minister Anand Sharma said that the Japanese pharma industry is projected to grow to $100 billion and the Indian generics can “play a key role in providing affordable healthcare”. India implemented a comprehensive economic partnership agreement with Japan in August 2011. Its imports from Japan increased by over 3 per cent to $12.5 billion last fiscal while exports to the country declined to $6.26 billion during the period from $6.32 billion in 2011-12.

Ahead of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s visit to Tokyo towards the end of this month,Sharma is on a two-day visit to Japan for a comprehensive review of bilateral economic engagements. Sharma also called upon Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and apprised him of the progress made in the implementation of the Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor,which was conceptualised during the 2007 visit of Abe to India.

According to an official statement,Abe said that Japanese companies are looking forward to partner with India in the project’s implementation. Japan has already committed $4.5 billion in the first phase of the project,and the statement said that India has committed an equal amount for development of trunk infrastructure for creation of new industrial townships along the corridor. Japan holds 26 per cent equity in the project.

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