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India committed to early conclusion of Doha Round: Anand Sharma

New Delhi, Thu, 07 Apr 2011 ANI

New Delhi, Apr 7 (ANI): Union Commerce and Industry Minister Anand Sharma on Thursday said that India is committed to successful conclusion of Doha Round and support multi-lateral and bilateral engagement with rest of the world.


During a business meeting with Johann Schneider-Ammann, Federal Councilor Minister for Economic Affairs of Switzerland, here, Sharma said: "India has always stood for an open, equitable, predictable, non-discriminatory and rule-based multilateral trading regime. India gives primacy to engagements in multi-lateral negotiations at the World Trade Organization."


Stressing that developed world is resorting to protectionist tendencies which hurt both developed and developing economies, Sharma said: "In our lifetimes, we have seen a tectonic shift in global growth and investment patterns and while Europe and Americas dominated the economic discourse in the centuries we left behind, the 21st century is decidedly a different one in which emerging economies of Asia, Africa and Latin America are playing a much larger role.


"India which is home to a sixth of world's population is finally beginning to realize its true potential on the global stage," he added.


He also announced that European Free Trade Association (EFTA) with India will be signed by the end of this year. Switzerland being a member of EFTA is playing an active role in the negotiations.


Highlighting that India is the one of the fastest growing economies with a GDP of over 1.6 trillion dollars, Sharma said: "The last five years before the economic down turn, India was consistently growing at an average of nine per cent and the resilience of Indian economy was demonstrated at the peak of the economic crisis when our financial institutions, banks and regulators were able to withstand a difficult time.


Highlighting the importance of bilateral relationship with Switzerland, he said: "Switzerland is a prosperous and modern market economy and highly skilled labour force. Switzerland also is a global leader in innovation and over a period of time has evolved a sophisticated business culture. It is home to one of the world's finest scientific research institutions and has evolved a unique collaborative model between academia and industry to ensure focus on applied research."


He further said that Swiss expertise in manufacturing has a big role to play in the relations between the two countries.


He informed that India will very soon have its first Manufacturing Policy as the manufacturing sector has a crucial role in building the infrastructure and employment generation for the millions of people.


Sharma informed that about 170 Swiss companies are already present in India, which employs around 60,000 people and bilateral trade is close to 20 billion dollars.


Schneider-Ammann, while lauding the strides made by India in areas such as renewable energy, energy efficiency and green buildings invited Indian companies for an active exploration of opportunities arising from this emerging sector and are undertaking measures to reduce energy dependence and raise efficiency. (ANI)


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