India, Russia to set up task force on trade
India and Russia will set up a joint task force (JTF) to boost bilateral trade to a level of 10 billion dollars by 2010 from the present two billion dollars, a senior official of the Indian government has said.
The JTF would be set up by the end of this year when Prime Minister Manmohan Singh visits Moscow for summit talks with President Vladimir Putin, Commerce Secretary GK Pillai at a meeting of Joint Study Group (JSG) on economic cooperation in Moscow.
The JSG was instituted to identify the bottlenecks in tapping the potential of bilateral economic cooperation and trade.
According to Pillai, the proposed task force would monitor implementations of recommendations, covering goods, services and investments, as given in a 150-page-report prepared by the JSG.
JTF would be a time-bound mechanism with the final goal of signing comprehensive economic cooperation agreement (CECA) and free trade agreement (FTA) with Russia, once it joins WTO, Pillai told reporters.
From the Indian side, JTF would be headed by the Commerce Secretary, Pillai said, adding that the Russia would be represented by a team led by Mikhail Dmitriyev, Centre of Strategic Research (CSR), which is a Kremlin think-tank linked to the Russian Economy and Trade Ministry.