Union Minister Piyush Goyal said Korean carmakers Hyundai and Kia have caused India billions of dollars in trade deficit with Korea and other countries. Union Industry and Trade Minister Piyush Goyal said this at the closing ceremony of the three-day Asia Economic Dialogue on Saturday.
Goyal said, “India’s free trade agreement (FTA) has been taken advantage of by Korean car manufacturers like Hyundai and Kia. Through the free trade agreement, these companies are importing indiscriminately into India. Crores of dollars have been lost. I have no objection to saying this publicly.”
Goyal informed that talks are on with Korea to open its markets. But the highly nationalistic spirit of Korean business has become a challenge for us. They are buying goods from the local market despite the high price.
This spirit is lacking among our profit-oriented domestic traders, he said. They can buy goods from any country in the world in search of the cheapest price.
Goyal further said, “The governments of Korea and Japan do not stop any import from India at their place. But still we cannot sell 1 tonne of steel there. Unfortunately, Indians do not have such a national spirit.
Goyal said that if we can save 10 paise, we are happy to import from anywhere and from anyone. If we can make 2% more profit in our business then we are happy to import from China also. This is very unfortunate and sad.
He said that he wants to show the mirror to Indian industries and consumers by giving examples of these countries. “Korea and Japan will buy steel from their domestic market, even if it costs $100 more per tonne, but they will not allow any Indian firm to be their supplier,” Goyal said.
Goyal said that this is not a ban on the part of governments, but it is a national spirit that businesses show to support their own industry. But Indian businesses are indifferent to this sentiment.
The minister said that production linked incentive (PLI) schemes can help the manufacturing sector to some extent, as they will eventually understand the need to ‘be competitive, stand on their own feet and provide quality products to consumers’.