India, China to discuss market access, trade deficit

Market access for Indian IT and agriculture products in China will be among the key issues for discussion between the two countries at the joint economic group meeting tomorrow.

The meeting will take place between Commerce Minister Anand Sharma and Chinese Commerce Minister Chen Deming at the ninth session of India-China Joint Economic Group (JEG).

Sharma is also expected to raise the concern of widening trade deficit with the neighbouring country. According to the provisional data, the trade deficit of USD 39.65 billion was in China's favour.

"Sharma is likely to raise the issue of growing trade deficit. The issues related to market access in IT and ITeS and Indian agricultural products are also likely to be raised," an official said.

Export of pharmaceutical products, diamonds, sea food to China are also likely to be discussed in the meeting. Investment related issues and import of Indian films by Chinese side are also likely to come up for discussion, he said.

The Chinese side is expected to discuss ways to strengthen cooperation in trade remedies and service trade.

"The border trade issues between India and China, and modes to improve investment and operation environment for Chinese enterprises in India are also likely to be put to discussion," he added.

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

The first meeting of the JEG was held here in 1989. The last session was held in Beijing on January 19, 2010.

In 2011-12, the bilateral trade between the countries stood at USD 75.45 billion. While India's exports stood at USD 17.90 billion, imports were USD 57.55 billion.

The Chinese Trade Minister will also interact with industry leaders tomorrow.

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