Suresh Prabhu to meet Chinese counterpart, discuss ways of reducing trade deficit in Joint Economic Group meeting tomorrow

New Delhi: Trade ministers and senior officials of India and China would deliberate upon ways to boost two-way commerce and reduce trade deficit in the Joint Economic Group (JEG) meeting in New Delhi on Monday.

The meeting assumes significance as India has time and again raised the issue of heavy trade imbalance with China and sought steps to facilitate Indian exports in areas including pharmaceutical and agricultural products and information technology services.

Commerce and Industry minister Suresh Prabhu and his Chinese counterpart Zhong Shan will discuss "how to balance the trade gap in the India-China Joint Economic Group meeting," a government official said.

Representational image. AFP

Representational image. AFP

Investment related issues are also likely to come up for discussion besides market access matters and other non-trade barriers.

Trade deficit with China stood at $36.73 billion during April-October this fiscal. Increasing trade deficit with China can be attributed primarily to the fact that Chinese exports to India rely strongly on manufactured items to meet the demand of fast expanding sectors like telecom and power.

Prabhu has recently said that India is keen to deliberate upon ways to reduce the trade deficit with China. "We will discuss that issue bilaterally," he has said.

The JEG was formed in December 1988 during the visit of the then Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi to Beijing.

In 2011-12, the bilateral trade between the countries stood at $75.45 billion. While India's exports stood at $17.90 billion, imports were $57.55 billion. India's trade deficit with China has marginally dipped to $51 billion in 2016-17 from $52.69 billion in the previous fiscal.

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Updated Date: Mar 25, 2018 12:36:19 IST

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