Live Mint - 21 September 2022
India-UK Free Trade Agreement likely to be sealed by Diwali: Piyush Goyal
By Sounak Mukhopadhyay
Piyush Goyal has said that both the UK and India are working toward the Diwali deadline for the India-UK free trade agreement (FTA). The Union Commerce Minister mentioned Queen Elizabeth II’s demise and said "as we are expanding our engagements, the UK is at a cusp". In August, the fifth round of FTA negotiations between the two nations came to a close.
"Two days ago, I received a letter from the UK again reiterating that they want to stick to the Diwali deadline (for the India-UK Free Trade Agreement)," Goyal said at an event on September 20 in New Delhi.
According to Goyal, if India doesn’t participate with the global economy, it will be "the losers" in terms of its engagements and efforts to achieve self-reliance. Today, Atmanirbhar is a topic of conversation everywhere. As per the minister, no force can prevent India from becoming a developed country in the following 25 years. According to him, the world wants to interact with India and has more faith in it than Indians do.
The FTA between India and the United Kingdom is expected to be completed by Diwali 2022, according to Alex Ellis, the British High Commissioner to India. He claimed that, over the course of the next 25 years, the pact will boost jobs and contribute to India’s economic progress.
On being asked if it could be a "Diwali Dhamaka", Ellis nodded, saying, "I hope so."
"I think we have high ambition on completing the FTA by Diwali. The FTA will create more jobs, more growth, and more opportunities for India to grow and develop," the UK High Commissioner added.
"Both India and the UK need to grow because we have great ambitions from both prime ministers. FTA is one of the best ways we can support the growth and development of India’s economy and India’s employment over the next 25 years. Now is the time to write a new chapter in our history as partners and support each other in our growth," he said.
(With ANI inputs)