Brussels, June 17. European Commission Economic Vice President Valdis Dombrovsky on Friday promised that Brussels would “formally” resume talks today on a free trade agreement between India and the European Union.
The move comes ahead of a meeting between Domprovsky and Indian Trade Minister Piyush Goyal in Brussels today.
“We will meet later today to formally resume talks on a free trade agreement between the EU and India,” the EC vice-president announced during a press conference to evaluate the outcome of the XII Ministerial Conference of the World Trade Organization. (WTO) ended today.
Domprovsky acknowledged at the WTO meeting that the starting positions of India and the EU were “mostly” “different”, although “positive” results were reached.
“In this sense, I think we should approach our negotiations on a free trade agreement,” he said.
At a summit in May last year, union and Indian leaders decided to resume talks on a free trade agreement. Negotiations to close the agreement between India and the European Union began in 2007, but were suspended in 2013.
Despite insisting that the EU places more emphasis on “the object” than the deadline, Domprovsky agreed that an “ambitious” calendar would be set up for dialogue.
“It should be an ambitious agreement. We need to cover a number of issues, including trade and sustainable development. It needs to grow further in other sectors, including investment, public procurement, and many other sectors. Basically we will move forward, ”he said.
Domprovsky stressed that food issues were discussed at the WTO Ministerial Conference, and that the current crisis in the region was due to the Russian invasion of Ukraine. It is plundering Ukrainian grains and other food in the occupied territories and destroying food storage in other parts of Ukraine.
“Russia is using food security and the threat of famine as weapons of war,” he said.
Domprovsky, on the other hand, stressed the need to reform the WTO.
“This Ministerial Conference has shown that the WTO needs to be reformed and to renew its rules to better address the challenges of the 21st century. Reform in operations, negotiations, monitoring, debate and dispute resolution, “he explained. EFE
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