India and Argentina Monday agreed to expedite signing of the bilateral investment treaty (BIT) and the double taxation avoidance agreement (DTAA) between the countries to promote economic ties. Taking note of the increase in two-way investment flows over the past few years and its contribution in strengthening the economic ties between the two countries, both the sides agreed to further promote bilateral investments in sectors of mutual interest.
They "agreed to expedite the signing of the BIT and the DTTA between the two countries," a joint statement issued after a summit-level meeting between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Argentine President Mauricio Macri here. The two leaders also agreed that there was immense potential to increase two-way services trade in tourism, films, health care and information technology, among others.
With a view to initiating India-Argentina cooperation in the infrastructure sector, both the sides encouraged companies to explore partnerships including through the public-private partnership (PPP) mode. In the pharmaceutical sector, the leaders highlighted the importance of concluding enabling instruments such as a memorandum of understanding on cooperation in medical products regulation, which facilitates the exchange of information on procedures for inspection and registration of pharmaceutical products.
Further, the two countries agreed to continue to work towards expeditious market access in other agricultural products of interest to each other. "Argentina expressed interest in oranges, tangerines, grapefruits, grapes, blueberries, nuts, yerba mate and sesame seeds and India in, rice, onion, potato, pomegranate, grapes, banana, mango, poultry and poultry products," it said.
Acknowledging the immense potential for bilateral cooperation in the mining sector, the Argentine side expressed satisfaction that the Indian joint venture of three public sector mining companies, Khanij Bidesh India (KABIL), had shown interest in the lithium mining in Argentina. Argentina expressed its readiness to facilitate geological information for lithium exploration and coordinate with the Argentine provinces through the Federal Mining Council.
India also invited Argentina's collaboration in meeting its target of 175 GW power generation from renewable energy sources by 2022. "The Argentine side invited Indian companies to participate in its RenovAR renewable energy programme," it said.
It added that the two countries agreed on the necessity of expanding the India-Mercosur preferential trade agreement and add more number of products at the earliest. MERCOSUR is a South American trade bloc comprising Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay and Paraguay as full members.
(With inputs from agencies.)