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India and United States Joint Statement on the Trade Policy Forum
Dec 06, 2014

Minister of Commerce and Industry of India and U.S. Trade Representative Ambassador met in New Delhi recently for the eighth ministerial-level meeting of the India-United States Trade Policy Forum (TPF). The two governments signaled their readiness to enhance bilateral trade and investment ties in a manner that promotes economic growth and job creation in both India and the United States.

India and US discussed and exchanged views on a range of trade and investment issues, in particular, Agriculture, Services, Promoting Investment in Manufacturing and Intellectual Property.  Both countries noted the importance attached to the Trade Policy Forum by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Barack Obama to further stimulate bilateral trade and investment.

Agriculture: Both countries recognized the important role of agricultural and food trade in feeding their populations, providing consumer choice and supporting the livelihood of their farmers.  India and the United States agreed to establish a new technical dialogue that will promote cooperation on plant health, animal health, and food safety issues in a manner that facilitates the movement of agricultural goods between the two countries. They agreed to work towards facilitating agricultural trade between the two countries by engaging with each other closely with the intent of establishing science-and risk-based regulations and procedures that conform to international standards and guidelines.

Services and Investment: India and the USA highlighted the important role of the services sector in both the countries, and the significant potential for increasing bilateral services trade and investment.  To advance this goal, India and the United States agreed to increase engagement on services and investment issues.  The United States took note of India’s interest in engaging on social security totalization, and agreed to review any information provided by India about developments in its social security regime.  They decided to continue their engagement on visa issues, and the United States took note of India`s interest in ensuring easier access for Indian professionals in the United States.

Promoting Investment in Manufacturing: India and the USA discussed efforts that each country is undertaking to promote a business friendly environment for attracting investment in manufacturing.  Affirming their shared goal of using trade and investment as a vehicle for stimulating economic growth and job creation, both the countries agreed to deepen bilateral engagement aimed at promoting bilateral investment across sectors. Both countries stressed the importance of providing a transparent and predictable policy environment to help attract investments in manufacturing.

Intellectual Property and Related Issues: Recognizing the shared interest of creative industries, India and the USA agreed to deepen cooperation to build capacity and generate awareness in the field of copyright. Both the countries also acknowledged the paramount goal of ensuring the poorest populations in India and the United States have access to quality healthcare, and committed to identifying ways in which trade and innovation policies can enhance access to quality health and affordable medicines.

India highlighted the benefits of traditional Indian medicine in view of its potential to enhance access to affordable healthcare; and the importance of traditional knowledge in contributing to cultural, economic, and social development. The USA agreed to facilitate further engagement in this field between the experts of both countries.  India also highlighted its work on a new Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) policy which would stimulate innovation across sectors in the country.  The United States agreed to share information on this subject to support India’s on-going efforts. Both countries recognize the importance of providing a transparent and predictable policy environment for fostering innovation. They also recognize the importance of trade secrets protection to attracting investment and agree to exchange information on best legal practices in this area.

World Trade Organization: India & the USA expressed satisfaction at the recent understanding between India and the United States on the issue of public stockholding for food security purposes and the Trade Facilitation Agreement as a follow-up to the discussions between Prime Minister Modi and President Obama.  They committed to working with other WTO Members to ensure that the WTO General Council takes this understanding forward towards a satisfactory outcome.

Private Sector Advisory Group: India and the USA encouraged the continued work of the United States-India Private Sector Advisory Group (PSAG), which had been created under the TPF to provide strategic adviceBoth the countries expect that the work of TPF will benefit from the depth, breadth, and diversity of expertise of the PSAG in trade and international affairs in advance of the 2015 TPF meeting to be held in Washington, DC.


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