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Prime Minister Narendra Modi to discuss bulging trade deficit with China

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By NewsGram Staff Writer

Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his visit to Beijing next month, will take up the issue regarding  India’s bulging trade deficit with the Chinese leaders.

Modi is expected to propose measures to narrow the gap that had disproportionately skewed towards the neighbor.

According to the estimations of the Commerce Department, the trade deficit between India and China has widened up to $40 billion in 2014-15 and is expected to reach up to $60 billion in the next five years, if the issue went unnoticed.

The imports from China had increased up to 18.18 per cent to $55.77 billion, while exports had declined up to 18.88 per cent to $11.01 billion, reported the Commerce Department.

“The Prime Minister will make a strong pitch to reduce the deficit in case there is a future for India-China trade relations, this issue needs to be sorted out’,” said the Commerce secretary Rajeev Kher.

“The approach requires a three-pronged strategy; seeking effective market access from China in specific areas of India’s strength, channeling Chinese investment into Indian manufacturing and jointly investing in third world countries,” added the Commerce secretary during the three-day session of Global Exhibition in Services.

Kher also said that, “China has expressed interest in setting up industrial parks in the country. It has to be ensured that these fructify on time, because the more investments get delayed, the wider the trade deficit will get.”

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India Continues Engaging With USA Over H-1B Passport Issue

India is closely engaged with the US administration as well as the US Congress on this matter.

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As Trump proposes changes in H1-B visa, India continues to engage with US

India is continuing to engage with the US over the H-1B visa, largely availed of by Indian IT companies, after the Trump administration proposed changes to the programme, a senior official said on Thursday.

“It is a very important topic for us and that is the reason why we have time and again at various levels, we have taken up this matter with the US side,” External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said in response to queries by journalists here.

Kumar said that most recently, the issue was raised during the first ever India-US 2+2 Ministerial Meeting held here last month that was attended by External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj, Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Defence Secretary Jim Mattis.

On Wednesday, the US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) said that the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) plans to come out with its new proposal by January 2019.

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It will also “revise the definition” of employment and employer-employee relationship to “better protect” US workers and wages Flickr

The DHS said it was also proposing to remove from its regulations certain H-4 spouses of H-1B non-immigrants as a class of aliens eligible for employment authorisation.

The move to end the rule could have an impact on more than 70,000 H-4 visa holders, who have work permits.

The H-4 visas are issued by the USCIS to immediate family members (spouse and children under 21 years of age) of the holders of H-1B visa.

The DHS said it will propose to revise the definition of speciality occupation to increase focus on obtaining the best and the brightest foreign nationals via the H-1B programme.

It will also “revise the definition” of employment and employer-employee relationship to “better protect” US workers and wages, the DHS said.

Donald Trump, India
President Donald Trump speaks about immigration alongside family members affected by crimes committed by undocumented immigrants, at the South Court Auditorium on the White House complex, June 22, 2018, in Washington, VOA

In his remarks on Thursday, Kumar said that India is closely engaged with the US administration as well as the US Congress on this matter.

Stating that there are certain bills which have been introduced, he, however, said that “it is important to note that none of these bills have been passed so far”.

“When we have engaged with the US, we have emphasised that our partnership which we have in the digital sphere have been mutually beneficial,” the spokesperson said.

Also Read: USA And Other Countries Pledge To Eradicate Illegal Wildlife Trade

“We have highlighted the role which has been played by the highly skilled Indian professionals who have actually contributed to the growth and development of the US economy,” he stated.

“And also they have helped the US to maintain a competitive edge in the world towards innovation and science and technology.” (IANS)

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