Russia and India discuss free trade deal

By Michelle Perrett

- Last updated on GMT

Buffalo meat is one of India's key meat exports to Russia
Buffalo meat is one of India's key meat exports to Russia

Related tags: International trade

Talks are being held between Russia, WTO and India to agree a free trade agreement between India and the Eurasian Economic Union.

Vasiliy Lavrovsky, head of Russia’s Directorate for Veterinary Inspections in the Framework of the International Cooperation, and India’s Guruprasad Mohapatra, director general of its Department of Commerce under the Ministry of Commerce, led negotiations. 

They noted the importance of Indian buffalo meat export to Russia. However, India admitted it had some difficulty meeting the Russian requirements over raw milk. 

Russia requires that raw milk used for the dairy production shall originate from herds that have at least 1,000 cattle. 

Restricts possibilities​ 

There are only two herds of such size in India and that restricts the possibilities of dairy production for the Russian market. 

Lavrovsky said the requirement was introduced due to the fact that Indian territory is infected with dangerous diseases like foot and mouth disease, brucellosis and tuberculosis. It is much easier to control animal health on big farms, it claims. 

The two countries have agreed to hold further meetings with experts over these issues in September. 

They also discussed the importance of agricultural product export from Russia to India. 

Russia has already requested details of what requirements would be needed to import of poultry, pork and bovine hides to the Indian market. Russia said it is also ready to export grain and beans.

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