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India-US close on concluding trade package

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Washington, Jan 05: India and the US are close to concluding a trade package that would provide enhanced market access to both countries, India's outgoing Ambassador to the US Harsh Vardhan Shringla has said.

Shringla made the comments while addressing a group of Indian-American entrepreneurs during a farewell lunch on Friday organised for him by TiE DC, a regional chapter of the global non-profit membership and mentoring organization for entrepreneurs.

Indian Ambassador to the US Harsh Vardhan Shringla

"We are close to concluding a trade package that would provide enhanced market access to both countries," Shringla said during the event.

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The outgoing Ambassador, who would take up his new assignment as India's next foreign secretary later this month, however, did not give an exact date for the inking of the much anticipated trade deal.

The trade deal was first announced by US President Donald Trump when he met Prime Minister Narendra Modi in New York in September on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly.

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    Trump on September 24 said his country will soon have a trade deal with India to boost economic ties between the two nations.

    Shringla said the signing of the trade package would pave the way for a much bigger bilateral trade deal between the two largest democracies of the world, which will only benefit the companies of the two countries.

    "We see a lot of openings," he said.

    Shringla, who is scheduled to leave for India later this month, said that the India- US bilateral trade has increased significantly in the last one decade and it is expected to be over USD160 billion by 2019.

    Noting that there are a lot of complementarities between the Indian and the US economy, the Ambassador said that Indian-American entrepreneurs and in particular organizations like TiE DC play an important part in strengthening these bilateral ties, not only people to people but also economic and strategic relationship.

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