India's Aluminium industry body cautions govt of high imports


MUMBAI (Scrap Register): The Aluminium Association of India (AAI) has raised, with the government, its concerns of high imports of the material to the country as well as presence of China in the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP).

RCEP is a regional trade agreement spanning the 10 Asean countries and the group’s six free-trade agreement partners - Australia, New Zealand, Japan, China, South Korea and India.

"The sustainability of Indian aluminium industry has been adversely impacted by the increasing imports and declining domestic market share," the AAI said in its letter to the Commerce Ministry, IANS reported.

Despite having "sufficient domestic capacity" of 4.1 million tonne per annum (mtpa), almost 60% of the country's demand is met through imports, it said, noting that the majority of the aluminium imports into India are coming under Free Trade Agreements (FTA).

The imports from ASEAN countries under FTA are majorly of Chinese origin, which takes advantage of the agreements, it said.

It further said that "the presence of China in RCEP is the biggest threat for the Indian aluminium industry". Negotiations for the RCEP includes China and the ASEAN counties.

The suggestions come ahead of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership bloc's negotiators on May 24 with an aim to conclude the mega trade agreement this year.

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