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The European Union and India launched negotiations on a bilateral free trade and investment agreement in June 2007. However, between the governments, a number of controversies have been plaguing the talks. Delhi wants Brussels to relax its stringent food safety criteria which penalise Indian farm and fishery exports and to make it easier for Indian professionals to work in the EU. Europe is primarily out to win major openings of India’s services sector and broad liberalisation of foreign investment, while India does not want to discuss allowing European firms to compete in India’s government procurement market.

Indian social movements, including fisherfolk and labour unions, people living with HIV/AIDS and other health activists have been mobilizing against the FTA. International actions and campaigns have particularly targeted the proposed intellectual property provisions of the agreement, and the impact of the FTA on access to medicines.

last update: May 2012
Photo: MSF

EU-India trade talks resume under cloud of concern for public health
Negotiations on the EU-India free trade agreement continue tomorrow in Brussels amid warnings from NGOs from India and Europe about possible negative consequences for the public health of poor citizens in India
Pharma cos, public health groups want patent issue out of FTA talk with EU
Indian pharmaceutical firms and the network of public health groups have separately urged the government to keep patent-related issues out of the ongoing talks for the proposed India-EU free trade agreement.
FTA with EU stuck on non-trade barriers
Apart from trade issues, the free-trade agreement (FTA) negotiations between India and the European Union (EU) continue to be stuck over non-trade issues like human rights, child labour and environment.
Europe trade deal could hit Indian generic drugs
It took two years of secret suffering and gut-wrenching diarrhea to make Lumkile Sizila face the fact that he had HIV.
Civil society groups in India and across the world protest against EU-India FTA
Civil society and public health groups from India, Brazil and several other countries today vehemently objected to the proposed India-European Union Free Trade Agreement (FTA).
GTPI petition against the FTA between European Union and India
In light of the meeting with members of the International Trade Commission of the European Parliament, scheduled for April 9th at the office of the Brazilian Interdisciplinary AIDS Association, the Working Group of Intellectual Property (GTPI) decided to promote a on-line petition (in Portuguese and English) as form of protest against the negotiations of the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) between India and European Union.
Open statement to EU Trade Commissioner on the EU-India FTA
The Delhi Network of Positive People (DNP+) is calling on the EU Trade Commissioner to come clean on the demands and pressures being placed by the European Union on the Government of India to accept TRIPS-plus measures that will have a severe, adverse impact on access to safe, effective and affordable medicines in India and across the developing world.
EU trade pact won’t hit Indian generic drug cos: Sharma
Commerce minister Anand Sharma said on Monday that a proposed free-trade agreement (FTA) with the European Union (EU) would not hurt the generic drugs industry. The minister also said India would attract the same amount of foreign direct investment as last year.
Now Thailand object to India-EU free trade agreement
As informal talks have started between India and Europe on the free trade agreement (FTA) in New Delhi since Monday, apprehensions over provisions that could impact early access to generic medicines are being voiced in Thailand.
EU-India FTA: Impacts on women
CENTAD, in partnership with the Heinrich Böll Foundation, have come out recently with 4 reports on trade and gender. The first is a backgrounder (literature review) while the other three are on the gender impact of the EU-India FTA in the fields of agriculture, services and health.