India to join FTAs on own terms, fear psychosis needs to go away: Piyush Goyal : 31-10-2019

Commerce and industry minister Piyush Goyal on Wednesday cautioned against unwarranted and unfair fear-psychosis that has been created against free trade agreements (FTAs) by few people. While the government will never compromise with the interest of India, the country can’t remain isolated, he said

“You can’t have an equation where you expect all the benefits of multilateralism but will not give any benefits to anyone. Unfortunately, a narrative is sought to be made in our country particularly by a few people as if an international engagement that is sought to be discussed is going to kill India or Indian industry and farmers… a fear psychosis is sought to be created,” Goyal said at the launch of the report of the High Level Advisory Group here.

His statement assumes significance in the wake of India negotiating the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) trade pact, whose talks are expected to conclude next week amid opposition from various industries and ministries, and is also in talks with the US for a trade deal.

“We can’t have inefficient industry lobbying against imports or FTAs on the pretext that it would affect them… Don’t create a fear psychosis which is unwarranted and unfair to the people and poor of India,” he said.

Referring to FTAs signed in the past where trade pacts were signed with “time constraints and you were forced to sign on a particular date”, Goyal said the government will “decide on any agreement on India’s terms of what is good for the people and industry. I will ensure sufficient adequate safeguards for Indian industry”.

Source : Economic Times