India has raised its “serious” concerns over the growing trade deficit with South Korea, which stood at about USD 9.5 billion in 2021-22, an official statement said on Friday.
The issue came up for discussion during the ninth 9th round of the India-Korea comprehensive economic partnership agreement up-gradation negotiation, which was held in Seoul on November 3-4.
The two sides underlined the need to have negotiations based on a win-win approach and are forward-looking and outcome-oriented.
During the meeting, sub-groups on trade in goods, services, rules of origin, investment, sanitary and phytosanitary/technical barriers to trade issues held in-depth discussions.
“India raised serious concerns on the growing trade deficit between the two countries and discussed market access issues. Both sides agreed to work closely to address tariff and non-tariff barriers and deepen the relationship in the services sector,” the commerce ministry said.
They also shared a common view that both sides should make utmost efforts to expedite negotiations in order to reach a mutually beneficial and satisfactory outcome during 2023, it added.
It was agreed that the 10th round of CEPA upgradation negotiations will be hosted by India in early 2023.
The Indian delegation was led by Chief Negotiator Anant Swarup, Joint Secretary in the Department of Commerce, while the Korean side was led by their Chief Negotiator Yang Ghi-Wuk, Director General, Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy.
The trade deficit between India and Korea stood at USD 8.1 billion during 2020-21.
India’s exports in 2021-22 were USD 8.08 billion, while imports aggregated at USD 17.5 billion.