India will start negotiations with the WTO on trade agreements that would allow it to sell its own products to a wider range of countries, Trade Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said on Thursday.
The announcement came days after President Donald Trump ordered a review of the global trade agreement with the United States, which the United Nations says could cost the United State hundreds of billions of dollars.
The deal with the US and China would see India sell food, cosmetics and dairy products to the US, Canada and other countries, and in return receive a 30 per cent discount on imports.
It has been called the “most complex and ambitious” trade deal in the world.
India has been pushing for the trade deal to be a major factor in curbing trade with the rest of the world, including the US.
“We are working towards the WTO to open up the bilateral trade in goods and services,” Sitharman said.
“The WTO is very important to us.”
The government is also pushing for talks on the WTO’s Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (Ceta), a deal which would see the United Kingdom, the European Union, Japan and Canada sign up to a more flexible, more open system.
The trade deal with Canada, the second-largest in the European bloc, is expected to be ratified in early December.