India's envoy to U.S. says current trade talks first step to a comprehensive bilateral trade pact

NEW DELHI (Reuters) - India’s ambassador to the United States said on Thursday concluding current negotiations on a limited trade deal would be a crucial step towards a comprehensive bilateral trade pact between the two nations.

“First step to realise trade partnership is to conclude ongoing trade negotiations,” said Taranjit Singh Sandhu during a virtual summit organised by an industry body.

India and the United States have been struggling for more than a year to conclude the limited trade deal, sparring over higher tariffs and New Delhi’s policies on e-commerce and data storage.

Sandhu said the two nations were engaged in talks to get greater access for agricultural products in each other’s markets. Washington has been pressing New Delhi to roll back higher tariffs on a slew of farm products such as almonds, walnuts and apples.

Reporting by Neha Arora, Writing by Rupam Jain, Editing by Catherine Evans