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Commerce Ministry Plans Outreach Progammes to Improve Trade Ties With CIS Countries

The Ministry of Commerce & Industry is conducting outreach programmes in different cities to make Indian business persons aware of commercial opportunities available in the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) countries.

To fill the information gap, we in the Commerce Ministry are planning outreach programmes in five cities, said Shri Ravi Kapoor, Joint Secretary in the Ministry of Commerce, here today at the 2nd CIS Ambassadors` Interactive Round Table Forum organised by EEPC India. Two such programmes have already been conducted, including in Ahmedabad.

Addressing the 2nd Interactive Round Table with CIS Ambassadors, Shri Capoor said that the Commerce Ministry views CIS, ASEAN, African and Latin American countries as the four fastest growing regions of the world.

Requesting the Ambassadors of CIS countries to encourage their businessman to participate in the India Engineering Sourcing Show in Mumbai in January, Shri Capoor said that the problems relating to visa need to be sorted out.

EEPC India Chairman, Mr. Aman Chadha said that getting a business visa to Russia and other CIS countries would be a lot easier now with the Indian government working an arrangement with its CIS counterparts wherein recommendation from one of the apex chambers would speed up the grant of visa. I understand that that the government has worked out a plan with Russian government wherein the recommendation with the apex chambers would be considered while granting business visas to Indian exporters. Similarly, with other CIS countries the same proposal is being worked out so that Indian businessmen can undertake projects smoothly in this potential region, said Mr. Chadha.

Mr. Chadha said that there are a number of issues that can hinder the realisation of the potential for increasing India™s trade with the CIS countries. These issues relate to connectivity, visa regime and lack of banking channels between India and some of the natural resource rich countries of the region. He further added that presently more than 14 flights are operational every week between India and CIS region. However, more needs to be done in terms of connecting the business persons from the CIS and India, he said.

The Ambassadors of Russian Federation, Moldova, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, Georgia, Ukraine, Tajikistan and Turkmenistan made presentations to support drive of council to gain our share of engineering exports to the their countries.

For boosting trade, the Union Minister of Commerce and Industry Shri Anand Sharma has formally invited Mr. Ihor Prasolov, Minister of Economic Development & Trade, Ukraine to come to India for the third edition of the Indian Engineering Sourcing Show (IESS 2014), the flagship event of Ministry of Commerce & Industry, as a Partner Country. EEPC India is also in touch with Embassies of CIS countries in India and Indian embassies abroad for bringing in meaningful delegations for the flagship event.

In 2012-13, trade between India and Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) stood at USD 11.5 billion. However, it is possible to enhance the trade between India and CIS countries to USD 30 billion by 2020. The first step in this direction would be reaching the target of USD 20 billion by 2015.

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