Amidst the increased anxiety in India over the possible clampdown by the US administration on the H1-B visas, European Union has said that it is prepared to welcome more professionals from India in the IT sector. It has also condemned protectionism in any form in the sphere of International trade.
Advocating stronger and deep trade relations with India, the Committee on Foreign affairs of the European Parliament also expressed its unhappiness over the stalled dialogue between India and the European Union. The committee highlighted that the investment pact between EU and India was long pending and both sides had failed to resume the talks.
Condemning the US administration over its rhetoric for protectionism that had triggered worries in the Europe also, David McAllister the head of the delegation said that Europe is ready to welcome more professionals from India who are in high demand.
He said that Europe was forthcoming to professionals who are in high demand, especially people from India as they are highly skilled. The IT sector of Europe would not have been thriving if there were no professionals from India who are skilled, added Mr. McAllister, as quoted by the Times of India.
Immediately after assuming the office of the US President last month, Donald Trump decided to revamp the work authorization to the US that includes the H1-B and the L1 visas. This is being considered as a move that will adversely influence Indian IT firms in the US and their professionals.
Mr. McAllister also stressed for resuming the negotiations between India and the European Union over trade and investment. He added that the delegation had urged the leaders in India to resume the discussions as the pact will give a major boost to the bilateral trades.
Addressing the reporters, the head of the European delegation said that it was deeply regrettable that there was no progress being made on the issue of the investment pact and the present visit will be utilized to stress for resuming talks on the pact.
The European Union delegation, which is the second one from the union to India is scheduled to meet several leaders of the Indian government including Union Cabinet ministers, Ajit Doval the National Security Adviser, Arvind Panagariya the NITI Ayog Vice Chairman and Sumitra Mahajan the Lok Sabha Speaker.
A delegation of the European Parliament is already visiting India and it had also strongly advocated for resuming investment pact dialogues between the European Union and India during its meetings with Commerce Minister Nirmala Sitharaman and Finance Minister Arun Jaitley.
The investment pact talks have been hindered since May 2013 when both India and the European Union failed to overcome the deadlock on vital issues such as the IT sector’s data security status.
The negotiations for the proposed investment pact were commenced in 2007 and several hurdles have been confronted by both the sides owing to major points of divergences on vital issues.
India has already clarified that it will not pursue any investment plans with nations that permit investors to oppose the governments in international tribunals.
At the Brussels EU – India summit held last year both the sides could not make any progress on clearing the hurdles that have stalled the bilateral investment pact as many differences still persisted.
Both the sides have failed to address differences pertaining to movement of professionals and tariffs, while the EU has expressed interest in resuming the negotiations.
The European Union has demanded crucial cut down of levy on automobiles, tax reduction on wines, dairy products, and spirits, as well as a strong regime for intellectual property.