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India, EU resume free trade talks after nearly a decade

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The talks come amid ongoing efforts to isolate Russia economically in response to the Ukraine conflict.

India and the European Union have resumed talks on a free-trade deal after a nine-year gap, as Western countries seek to wean New Delhi off its close economic ties to Russia.

“Both sides are aiming for the trade negotiations to be broad-based, balanced and comprehensive, based on the principles of fairness and reciprocity,” India’s commerce ministry has said earlier when announcing the first round of talks in Delhi, which were due to run until Friday.

“There will also be discussions on resolving the Market Access Issues which are impeding bilateral trade,” it said.

The European Union is India’s second-biggest trading partner after the United States but talks with the bloc broke down in 2013 over issues including tariff reductions and patent protection.

Merchandise trade hit an all-time high of $116 billion in 2021-22, with India’s exports to the 27-member European Union hitting $65 billion, according to New Delhi.

Dubbed the “tariff king” by former US president Donald Trump, India has become more open to lowering trade barriers in recent years and is negotiating pacts with several other countries.

The Asian giant has refused to condemn Russia’s offensive in Ukraine, even increasing oil purchases from its long-standing strategic ally and biggest supplier of arms.

In February, India signed a major economic partnership agreement with the United Arab Emirates and agreed on an interim free-trade deal with Australia in April, aiming to finish off a full pact by the end of the year.

India is also in trade negotiations with Canada, Israel and Britain.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson said on a visit in April that Britain and India hoped to nail down an accord by October.

READ MORE: G7 nations to ban Russian gold imports in response to Ukraine conflict: US

Source: TRT 

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Drought in Europe limits river transportation of goods

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Droughts across Europe are causing some countries like Germany to prioritize rail transportation for materials and equipment that are essential to energy production, as shipping by river is becoming a challenge with the low water levels.

Germany also referred gas and transformer equipment for power production and transmission to be given priority over passenger services and other industrial requirements amid the Rhine’s shocking drought levels.

Stranded boats lie on the dried river bed of the Danube in the city of Novi Sad, Serbia, and France’s Loire River revealed its dried banks as historic droughts hit Loireauxence, France.

 

Source: CGTN

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JP says citizen’s rule can only be maintained through presidential system

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Leader of Jumhooree Party (JP) Qasim Ibrahim has stated that citizen’s rule can only be maintained through a presidential system. The leader of the government coalition party made the statement at a time when President of the Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) Mohamed Nasheed is seeking support for his proposal to establish a parliamentary system in the Maldives.

In the tweet, Qasim highlighted the importance of maintaining a presidential system, as the president and the parliament members are elected directly by the people. He said that the prime minister, who rules in a parliamentary system, is not chosen by the electorate.

President of MDP Nasheed has said he will propose amendments to the Constitution of the Maldives at the party congress, in order to establish a parliamentary system in the country. President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih, along with some cabinet ministers and political leaders, has voiced opposition to establishing a parliamentary system.

Source: psmnews

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Gabon confers Distinguished Award to Maldivian Foreign Minister

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The Government of Gabon has conferred the National Order of Merit of the Gabonese Republic to the Minister of Foreign Affairs and President of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) Abdulla Shahid.

The National Order of Merit of the Gabonese Republic was conferred to Minister Shahid by President Ali Bongo Ondimba at a ceremony held in Libreville, Gabon. The award was introduced in 1971 and is given to outstanding servicemen in various fields. Minister Shahid is currently in Gabon on an official visit as the UNGA president.

The Maldives established foreign relations with Gabon on March 20, 2008. This year marks the 14 years since the establishment of relations between the two countries.

Source: psmnews 

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