AMCHAM fights for the free trade pact between India and the US UU.

New Delhi, September 4 () The United States Chamber of Commerce in Hong Kong, which is currently leading a delegation of US brands seeking investment opportunities in India, has launched a free trade pact between India and the United States.

Tara Joseph, president of the US Chamber of Commerce (AMCHAM) in Hong Kong, said a free trade agreement would be a game changer in terms of boosting bilateral trade and investment opportunities.

She is part of the delegation that is currently on a three-day visit to India that includes companies such as Ralph Lauren Asia Pacific, PVH Far East (PVH Group owns iconic brands such as Calvin Klein, Tommy Hilfiger, Van Heusen, Arrow u0026 Izod ), Carter's Global Sourcing Ltd (Carter's Inc is the largest marketer of baby and children's clothing in the US) and VF Asia Sourcing.

The delegation held meetings with the Minister of Textiles of the Union, Smriti Irani, the secretary of Textiles, Ravi Capoor, and the executive director of Niti Aayog, Amitabh Kant, on Tuesday.

The delegation is considering investments worth millions of dollars in India to increase supplies in the textile and clothing sector.

One thing is certain about American brands that are thinking of entering: it is not an investment of a few million dollars for a few years. If larger brands enter, they are making substantial investments beyond USD 100 million and that is for a long period of time, said Joseph while addressing a press conference here on Tuesday.

The United States was the second largest trading partner for India in goods in 2018, and the largest export destination for Indian exporters.

Bilateral trade in goods and services grew at an average annual rate of 7.59 percent between 2008 and 2018, doubling its value from USD 68.4 billion to USD 142.1 billion.

As a group, we want to understand what we see as a great opportunity for Asia, so that our companies invest in India. The way the manufacturing moves away from China, India has the opportunity to get out and really compete on that front, said Joseph. Gautam Nair, president of the IIC Textiles Task Force on Sourcing and Investments, said that most of the US brands that are part of this delegation already have a presence in India. He said brands are looking to explore opportunities and decide whether to increase their supply in the country. The delegation's visit was coordinated by the Confederation of Indian Industry and AMCHAM. RSN HRS

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