India, Japan discuss trade, investment to fix irritants

New Delhi; India today raised with Japan various issues, including greater market access for its goods and services like marine products and pharma in that market, to boost trade between the two countries.

These were discussed during the third meeting of the Joint Committee at the secretary level under the India-Japan CEPA (Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement) here.

The Commerce and Industry Ministry also said that though there has been an increase in work visas issued by Japan after the co-operation agreement, the market share of Indian IT companies in Japan is considered below potential.

Both sides also tried to figure out how to improve this, the ministry said in a statement.

"The Indian side highlighted various issues which need to be addressed by the Japanese side for providing greater market access to Indian products in Japan, especially items with a high potential like sesame seeds, marine products and pharmaceuticals," it said.

India also sought recognition of the Indian organic standards by Japan.

The decision of Japan to reduce its increasing healthcare costs on account of its ageing population and switch over to a higher share of generic medicines was seen as a potential opportunity for the Indian pharma industry, which is strong in generics.

Further, Japan raised several issues relating to taxation and investment in India.

Both the sides agreed on the need for higher cooperation in providing market access to Indian products in Japan and facilitating Japanese investments in India, the ministry added.

The Indian side was led by Commerce Secretary Rita Teaotia and the Japanese delegation by Deputy Minister for Foreign Affairs Keiichi Katakami.

The bilateral trade between the countries stood at USD 14.51 billion in 2015-16. India received USD 20.96 billion

PTI