Moneycontrol
Last Updated : Nov 02, 2018 08:16 AM IST | Source: PTI

Donald Trump, Narendra Modi in talks on trade issues: White House

Commerce and Industry Minister Suresh Prabhu on Saturday in New Delhi said India and the US have exchanged offers for a possible trade deal with a view to resolving issues related to bilateral commerce.

US President Donald Trump has spoken to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and discussed trade issues between the two countries, a top White House official said Thursday.

"We (India and US) are in talks. We are in talks absolutely. India is a highly-valued ally. The president has spoken to the prime minister and so forth. We're in talks,” White House Chief Economic Advisor Larry Kudlow told reporters.

Kudlow, however, did not specify when the two leaders spoke on trade issues.

For the last several months, the White House has stopped issuing readouts of most of the telephonic conversation that Trump has with world leaders.

The president himself tweets about some of these telephonic conversations.

The chief economic advisor did not provide any details of the trade talks between India and the US.

“I can't go there. I can't go. We're talking. Talk is good by the way,” Kudlow said.

Commerce and Industry Minister Suresh Prabhu on Saturday in New Delhi said India and the US have exchanged offers for a possible trade deal with a view to resolving issues related to bilateral commerce.

"The negotiations are ongoing. Of course, at this stage they have given an offer and we have also given a counter-offer and we are working on it," he had at an event in New Delhi.

India is pressing for exemption from high duty imposed by the US on certain steel and aluminium products, resumption of export benefits to certain domestic goods under their Generalised System of Preferences (GSP) as well as greater market access for its products from sectors, including agriculture, automobile, auto components and engineering.

As many as 3,500 Indian products from sectors such as chemicals and engineering get duty-free access to the US market under the GSP, introduced in 1976.

On the other hand, the US is demanding greater market access for its agriculture goods, manufacturing products and medical devices.

India's exports to the US in 2017-18 stood at USD 47.9 billion, while imports were USD 26.7 billion. The trade balance is in favour of India.
First Published on Nov 2, 2018 08:12 am
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