Scindia is leading a business delegation to Brazil, Peru and Chile

India will soon undertake negotiations to discuss the possibility of expanding an agreement on tariffs with South American bloc Mercosur countries in November.

“Teams from both sides have been meeting and pledged to develop a list of new products to be included in the agreement in November this year,'' visiting Union Minister of State for Commerce and Industry Jyotirditya Scindia said during the India-Brazil business meeting in Sao Paulo on Friday.

The Agreement on Fixed Tariff Preferences (APTF) between India and Mercosur comprising Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay came into force in 2009, aiming at creating a free trade area. The APTF agreement, which at present covers import and export of 452 products, is to gradually increase the categories of products with special taxation.

Mr. Scindia said the extension of the agreement will be of strategic importance to boost trade relations between the countries involved. Trade volume between Mercosur and India should reach $17 billion in 2012 and $30 billion in 2030.

Roberto Giannetti, Director of the Department of International Relations of the Federation of Industries of Sao Paulo, said free trade between Mercosur and India would also be beneficial to Brazil.

“We are interested in a Mercosur-India free trade agreement. Brazil needs investments to be made in several areas and may also collaborate with India, especially in the supply of food and energy,'' he said. Brazil-India trade increased from $1 billion in 2003 to $4.7 billion in 2008.

Opportunities

Mr. Scindia called on the Brazilian industry to take advantage of the tremendous emerging business opportunities that were available in India.

He hoped that both India and Brazil would strive to take their bilateral cooperation to greater heights.

Mr. Scindia is now (September 1 to 8) leading a 12-member business delegation to Brazil, Peru and Chile.

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