20th ASEAN-India Economic Ministers Meeting:
The 20th ASEAN-India Economic Ministers’ meeting was held in Semarang, Indonesia, marking a significant step in enhancing economic cooperation between India and the ASEAN member countries.
Highlights of the Meeting:
- The meeting underscored the shared commitment to fortify the ASEAN-India Comprehensive Strategic Partnership, ensuring substantial benefits for both sides.
- The ministers highlighted the importance of fostering economic collaboration amid the challenges posed by the Pandemic.
- The bilateral trade between India and ASEAN in 2022-23 amounted to USD 131.5 billion, constituting 11.3% of India’s global trade for the same period.
- The ministers acknowledged AIBC’s endeavors throughout 2023, including the 5th ASEAN-India Business Summit held in Kuala Lumpur in March, 2023.
- AIBC is an organization formed by the Governments of ASEAN and India in 2005 with the aim to foster closer business linkages and provide an industry perspective to the broadening and deepening of economic linkages between ASEAN and India.
- Recognition was given to the concerns raised by businesses regarding Non-Tariff Barriers (NTBs), highlighting the growing exchanges and interactions among stakeholders from both sides.
- NTB refers to any obstacle or restriction that hinders international trade but does not involve the imposition of a direct tariff or customs duty on imported goods. Some examples of NTB are General or product-specific quotas, Quality conditions imposed by the importing country on the exporting countries, Unjustified Sanitary and Phyto-sanitary conditions etc.
- Amidst the intricate landscape of regional and global challenges, the ministers engaged in discussions about the multi-dimensional effects of the Covid-19 pandemic, climate change, financial market volatility, inflation, and geopolitical tensions.
- Key areas for cooperation were identified, such as robust Supply Chains, Food Security, energy security, health, and financial stability.