RCEP Should Not Lead To Job Losses, Hurt Make In India: SIAM
A JBM Solaris Ecolife electric bus (right) manufactured by JBM Group, stands next to the company’s Citylife bus at the Auto Expo 2018 held in Noida, Uttar Pradesh, India. (Photographer: Anindito Mukherjee/Bloomberg)

RCEP Should Not Lead To Job Losses, Hurt Make In India: SIAM

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The 16-member Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership should not lead to job losses and hurt the government's Make in India initiative, auto industry body Society of Indian Automobile manufacturers said on Friday.

Trade ministers of RCEP’s member nations will hold a meeting in Bangkok on Saturday. India’s Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal is expected to attend the meeting.

While there has to be a give-and-take between countries, under such agreements imports of completely built-up units of automobiles shouldn’t be allowed, SIAM said.

"Being a part of global trade, there are gives and takes. What we are only saying is that the government should be mindful of two things, and I am confident that the government is," SIAM President Rajan Wadhera said in Delhi. “Any such thing (RCEP and Free Trade Agreements) should not result in job losses and hurt Make in India.”

"No CBU import should be allowed (under the pact),” he added.

The RCEP bloc comprises 10 Association of Southeast Asian Nation nations (Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, Singapore, Thailand, the Philippines, Laos and Vietnam) and their six FTA partners—India, China, Japan, South Korea, Australia, and New Zealand.

SIAM is of the belief that FTAs with competing countries do not benefit the Indian automobile industry. It has demanded that 28 items, including hybrid, electric cars, and three-wheelers, be kept out of the purview of all such pacts.

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