New Delhi– Globalisation is going through a phase where countries were “revisiting and evaluating” their role in it, Commerce and Industry Minister Suresh Prabhu said on Monday.
According to Prabhu, who also holds the charge of the Ministry of Civil Aviation, the first phase of globalisation had faced “opposition”, while in the second phase, countries tried to embrace it and participate more.
“I am thinking, we have come to the stage where people (countries) are re-examining, revisiting, evaluating, what should be the role of the nation in the community,” the minister said in his address at an industry event by the CII.
Emphasising on having more trade among countries, he added that while most countries were revisiting their roles in globalisation, India was trying to engage with traditional and new partners.
“India has to position itself very appropriately and we have decided that we will be a country which will engage with all our traditional friends and also start making new friends,” he said.
Talking about new trade initiatives of the government he said, “We have started working on EU-India FTA (Free Trade Agreement). After 2013, when there were 16 rounds (of talks), (but) nothing happened, now we have invited them.”
“With Africa, we have told that we would like to work with you and prepare an FTA in such a way, that it will be in the long-term interest of Africans and Indians,” he said.
“Nothing” would ever be sustainable unless it is a win-win combination, he elaborated at the event.
Regarding trade ties with the Association of South East Asian Nations (Asean) and the Middle East countries, Prabhu said that India’s relations with both have “never been better before”.
He added that: “If we don’t have multilateral institutions like WTO (World Trade Organisation), each country will lose.”
The minister’s comments assume significance as economic tensions between the world’s two largest economies escalated after the US imposed tariffs on Chinese products and China announced plans for retaliatory action. (IANS)