US-India trade deal can be finalised before or soon after Prez polls: Goyal

The “whole package” of the US-India trade deal is almost ready and it can be finalised when the local political situation in the United States is conducive, Union Minister of Commerce and Industry Piyush Goyal said on Tuesday.

Goyal said that he is in touch with US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and both the countries agree that the deal can be concluded before or soon after the Presidential elections in November.

“The whole package is near ready and can be finalised at any time when the local political situation in the US permits them to. India believes that it has to be a win-win situation for both India and US,” Goyal said during the US-India Strategic Partnership Forum’s third Annual Leadership Summit.

“I spoke with Ambassador Lighthizer. We agree that we can look at doing it before elections also or soon after. I am open to signing up tomorrow,” Goyal said.

He further said that it is in favour of India and the US to deepen their strategic partnership with the trade deal.

“It is in the interest of India and US to deepen our strategic partnership with this trade deal. It will open the doors to starting a dialogue on a larger bilateral engagement,” the Union Minister said.

Goyal hoped that the two countries can move to the next stage of larger engagement for a free trade agreement.

Earlier on Monday, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar had an interactive session with former US envoy to India Timothy Roemer, at the US-India Strategic Partnership Forum.

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