Tatsat Chronicle Magazine

Interests Of Farmers And Dairy Sector Protected in FTA : Minister Goyal

April 15, 2023
Dairy sector
Picture for representational purpose. Photo: Wiki Commons

Union Minister of Commerce and Industry, Consumer Affairs, Food & Public Distribution and Textiles Piyush Goyal, has reiterated that the interests of farmers, dairy sector and fishermen will be protected completely in the proposed free trade agreement (FTA) with the European Union.

Speaking in Rome where he was on an official visit to hold discussions with leaders and the private sector on ways to further enhance trade and investment ties between the countries, Goyal said, the kind of business opportunities which India provides for EU businesses are huge and “nobody can provide those in the world”.

“Keeping all this in mind, we would do the FTA… We will protect the interests of farmers and dairy sector… We have done that with UAE and Australia trade pacts also,” Goyal has said.

Chief negotiators of India and the European Union (EU) for FTA are scheduled to meet from June 19-23 in New Delhi for the fifth round of negotiations.

After his discussion at the World Trade Organisation (WTO) ministerial conference last year Goyal had said, “we fully protected the interests of our farmers, MSMEs, and fishermen. There will be no burden on them. We protected their interests”.

“Checks are being placed on illegal fishing in the high seas and our fishermen will have full freedom in our EEZ (Exclusive Economic Zones). Similarly, we have ensured the MSP (Minimum Support Price) stays and our farmer’s interests have been fully protected,” the minister added.

“India will not compromise on its interests that is not possible,” Goyal said. The minister also went to Paris for the India-France business summit. Goyal said that Italy and France have offered unstinted support for the early conclusion of negotiations for the India-EU trade agreement.

Goyal met Adolfo Urso, Minister for Enterprises and Made in Italy in Rome yesterday and discussed the range of issues of mutual interest. Goyal was accompanied by senior officials and a high-level business delegation led by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), while Minister Urso was accompanied by his Deputy Minister Valentino Valentini and other senior officials.

Both ministers highlighted the elevation of bilateral relations to strategic partnership during the recent visit of the Prime Minister of Italy Giorgia Meloni to India, an official statement said.

Goyal highlighted India’s inspirational growth story comprising youth power, digitization, and financial inclusion of 140 billion population with aspirations. He also underscored India’s achievement in clean energy to deal with climate change impact and emphasised that India has achieved 40% of its installed capacity of energy from renewable in 2021 and set an ambitious goal of generation of 500 GW by 2030.

Goyal also briefed Minister Urso about India’s capital investment of $1.4 trillion under the national infrastructure pipeline to build world-class infrastructure.

A business delegation led by CII also met Minister Urso and his colleagues, and had a fruitful interaction. Both Ministers emphasized on more collaboration and cooperation to tap the huge potential in two large economies.

Goyal also met the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure and Sustainable Mobility Matteo Salvini.

Both sides highlighted the need to promote investments in the field of sustainable mobility, the statement said adding that Goyal pitched for enhancing Italian investments in the fields of dedicated freight corridors, ports, airports, and high-speed railway lines while underscoring the Government of India’s flagship initiatives.

Girja Shankar Kaura

The writer is a Delhi-based freelance journalist, who has reported and written on a wide range of subjects in an extensive career.