Commerce minister Piyush Goyal and US Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross discussed the possibility of the two countries inking a free trade agreement to strengthen commercial ties during an informal tele-conversation on Thursday.
“The principals also conversed on the ongoing India-US trade discussions and appreciated the substantial progress made by both sides on most of the outstanding issues,” stated the Commerce Ministry in a release. There was a desire expressed to conclude the initial limited trade package that the two sides have been trying to finalise over the last few months.
Discussions were also held over concerns on the US “denying” India the opportunity to participate in supply contracts of US government agencies with respect to 24 Indian products. This is because the US has designated them “child labour” sectors under its Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act list, said the Ministry, adding that Ross offered to set up a meeting between labour department officials of both sides.
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