India’s commerce minister Piyush Goyal has proposed a ‘Preferential Trade Agreement’ with the US to include 50-100 products and services as the countries consider a possibility of a trade deal. The commerce minister believes it could be an interim step between a quick trade deal and a more comprehensive Free Trade Agreement, which could take a few years to finalise.
On July 16, US Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross and Goyal had an informal tele-meeting to discuss an initial trade deal.
Goyal on Tuesday stated that a deal between the two countries is just a matter of few phone calls now.
With the deal, the US is seeking better access to India’s agriculture, dairy, and the medical sector. India on the other hand has asked for the removal of mutual tariff hikes on steel and aluminum. Goyal has also sought restoration of benefits under the US Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) which was terminated by the Trump administration in 2019.
The agreement, India feels could help curtail cheap imports from China and boost domestic production.