x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 23 July 2017

India and China move to ease trading restrictions

The two sides have targeted trade flows of US$100 billion (Dh367bn) by 2015 from $75.5bn now.

NEW DELHI // India and China pressed each other for greater market access for their products, from medicines to Bollywood films, at a meeting of trade ministers yesterday.

Despite twitchy relations and occasional heated rhetoric, business relations between India and China have boomed for more than a decade. The two sides have targeted trade flows of US$100 billion (Dh367bn) by 2015 from $75.5bn now.

However, although China is one India's largest trade partners, that trade is heavily skewed in Beijing's favour. From just $1bn in 2001-02, India's trade deficit with China has ballooned to $39.7bn in 2011/12.

Chen Deming, China's trade minister, yesterday called on India to improve its business climate and to help make it easier for Chinese workers to get visas, when he met his Indian counterpart, Anand Sharma, in New Delhi.

For its part, India has long complained that its companies, from IT and services to pharmaceuticals and Bollywood filmmakers, are unfairly restricted when trying to enter the Chinese market.

"The two governments need to work together to create a better, easier and more relaxing and business-enabling environment for our potential Chinese and Indian investors," Mr Chen said.