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Procedura : 2006/2034(INI)
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Dokument w ramach procedury : A6-0256/2006

Teksty złożone :

A6-0256/2006

Debaty :

PV 27/09/2006 - 10
CRE 27/09/2006 - 10

Głosowanie :

PV 28/09/2006 - 7.7
CRE 28/09/2006 - 7.7
Wyjaśnienia do głosowania

Teksty przyjęte :

P6_TA(2006)0388

Debaty
Środa, 27 września 2006 r. - Strasburg Wersja poprawiona

10. Stosunki gospodarcze i handlowe z Indiami (debata)
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  Πρόεδρος. – Η ημερήσια διάταξη προβλέπει τη συζήτηση της έκθεσης του Sajjad Karim, εξ ονόματος της Επιτροπής Διεθνούς Εμπορίου, σχετικά με τις οικονομικές και εμπορικές σχέσεις της Ευρωπαϊκής Ένωσης με την Ινδία, [2006/2034(INI)], (A6-0256/2006).

 
  
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  Sajjad Karim (ALDE), rapporteur. – Mr President, as the geopolitical centre of gravity shifts to Asia in the 21st century, if you look at India you see the future. Considering its size and complexity, India’s stable and vibrant society remains a monumental achievement. Its commitment to democracy, pluralism and the rule of law guarantees consistency in trade relations. Yet, for a country approaching a fifth of the world’s population, India counts for less than one fiftieth of world trade.

As India’s largest trading partner and principal source of foreign investment, the EU is poised to help India reap the benefits of liberalisation. With our shared history and commitment to secular government and religious pluralism, the EU and India are natural partners. We became strategic partners in June 2004, yet it was another year before a joint action plan was agreed. Even today, the Commissioner lacks the authorisation to turn the work of the high-level trade groups into a concrete deal. In the meantime, President Bush has succeeded in brokering a quite frankly worrying US-India nuclear deal.

The Commissioner claims India as his destination of choice – and of course I mean Commissioner Mandelson here – yet has fuelled EU obsession with China. India poses equal, if distinct, challenges for the EU and the Commission must reflect that as it lays out its new strategy by working with stakeholders to mirror its China consultation.

The Doha round remains the chief mechanism for shaping equitable globalisation. The multilateral trading system is a most just and effective way of expanding and managing trade and it shields the weak from the use and abuse in the unilateral scramble for trade domination. However, a Doha deal does not preclude bilateral WTO-plus arrangements. Only through greater openness to partnerships that go beyond what a lowest common denominator WTO deal could now provide, will the EU begin to address the global competitiveness agenda of the future.

A free trade agreement with India must be central to the Commission’s new global Europe strategy. This House must back the Commissioner 100% as he makes the case to the Council for a negotiating mandate to deliver bilateral FTAs, opening markets and securing fairer trading conditions in new areas of growth throughout Asia.

India must match our resolve and bolster its promises for Helsinki. India has proved itself adept at juggling global players to boost competitiveness. It is time for a deal with its most obvious partner. Deadlines must be set so that we can achieve common ambitions in the areas that will dictate the terms of the 21st century: protection of intellectual property rights, open markets for services and investment, and effective trade defence instruments.

No strategy for economic growth is complete without addressing the growing crisis of climate change. The impact of growth in Asia on energy supply is phenomenal. India’s future growth is dependent on meeting spiralling energy needs. Severe shortages and over-dependency on petrol and coal are driving up costs and pollution. An effort to develop nuclear energy is symptomatic of that crisis. However, even if India did develop nuclear energy it would meet only 2% of total energy requirements. It would also constitute a climb-down from Gleneagles pledges to halt climate change and promote energy conservation.

Both India and the EU have long traditions of promoting renewable energy. India has built the world’s fourth largest wind power industry, developed biogas digesters and solar cells and supported the development of renewable energy in Asia. We must work together to define the global energy architecture through innovation and sustainable energy development whilst meeting climate change benchmarks.

India’s economic growth is booming at 8% and is set to double in a decade. Dotcom benefactors make up India’s rich list, cashing in as India becomes the global hub for ITC development. Yet India’s economy remains full of paradoxes. The uneven distribution of the benefits of globalisation has left nearly four million people living on less than one dollar per day.

The EU must ensure that the benefits of our trading relationship are shared with Indians – all of them. International trade can be a powerful driver of economic growth and poverty reduction but it is not a silver bullet. To continue to lift people out of pockets of poverty, India’s trade reforms must complement development policies.

Linking external and internal policies is not aided by India’s infrastructure, which displays characteristics of a developing nation while seats of enterprise dominate the skylines of Mumbai and Bangalore. Investment must focus on rural areas, providing better water supplies and sanitation, improving transport links and the quality of grid power output.

India is committed to the Millennium Development Goals and its own five-year plan exceeds UN expectations, but there is increased doubt that India will meet four out of the eight goals on schedule. Serious concerns remain over child labour and the spread of HIV/AIDS has a potential to disrupt India’s progress.

Trade relations cannot be divorced from human rights and development concerns. We have a duty to India to reverse those trends. EU assistance must be directed to lagging regions and under-represented social groups. Capacity-building efforts must focus on the poorest states, enabling them to use funds effectively. Foreign investment must provide funds for education and rural health.

As India moves from developing to developed, it bears regional responsibility and sustained growth. It must take its neighbours with it. SAFTA will bring manifold expansion in the region. True, it has not been smooth sailing and Indo-Pak disputes have stalled progress, but strong leadership in the region has led to trade now being used as a confidence-building measure, particularly over Kashmir.

Europe must look at Asia and consider its astonishing growth as an opportunity rather than a threat. The EU needs more confidence about its ability to manage change and remain competitive. Inevitably it will require some restructuring and a change of mindset.

 
  
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  Joe Borg, Member of the Commission. Mr President, I would like to thank the rapporteur, Mr Karim, and the International Trade Committee, for the excellent work that has been done.

The report is comprehensive, addressing almost all possible aspects of EU-India economic and trade relations. This report is also timely, as it takes place ahead of the forthcoming EU-India Summit in Helsinki on 13 October 2006, and we will take its recommendations into consideration. Our cooperation with India is manifold and it is difficult to address it exhaustively in this speech. Therefore, I will point to some of the main features that respond to your concerns and also update the House in more detail on the trade and investment issues.

Generally, our cooperation is good and is making progress. Regarding the environment, for instance, last year India hosted the first EU-India forum on waste management, which was followed by various visits by and meetings of the working party on that issue. The holding of the second Environment Forum is under discussion.

Regarding employment and social issues, the Commission and the Indian Labour Minister agreed in a bilateral meeting a work programme for 2006 and 2007 based on the Joint Action Plan. A draft memorandum of understanding is to be signed, or initialled, at the forthcoming Helsinki Summit. More broadly, following a bilateral meeting between Commissioner Almunia and the Indian Finance Minister, the launch of regular macroeconomic dialogue has been proposed.

The business side has not been forgotten and thanks to Commissioner Mandelson, who pushed forward the idea with his counterpart Trade Minister Nath, the EU-India CEO Round Table, allowing active business-to-business dialogue, is now ready to be launched at the Business Summit on 12 October 2006.

Our development cooperation is concentrated on sector support for elementary education, health and family welfare. Poverty alleviation has been the central objective in all projects. The Country Strategy Paper (CSP) for 2007 to 2013 reaffirms that commitment with an approximately 65 to 70% allocation to the health and education sectors. Encouragingly, our State Partnership Programmes with Rajasthan and Chhattisgarh, amounting to a total contribution of EUR 160 million towards supporting water management, education and health, have been signed and can now be implemented.

Turning to trade and investment relations with India, I welcome the fact that the conclusions of the report adopted by the International Trade Committee fully support the Commission's approach. More specifically, the Committee has called on the European Union to enter into a free trade agreement (FTA) with India. India is keen to launch a free trade agreement with the European Union as soon as possible. This has been the Indian position for a long time, pushed by Prime Minister Singh himself.

I welcome the committee's first comment that negotiations on the Doha Development Agenda (DDA) are not incompatible with bilateral WTO-plus negotiations. The European Union seeks to build on and complement its commitment to the multilateral WTO trading system with a new generation of bilateral FTAs, in particular with key growing markets in Asia. The European Union continues to see the WTO as the fundamental platform on which to build global liberalisation.

There will be no retreat from multilateralism. An EU-India FTA can build on WTO multilateral liberalisation by addressing areas, such as trade and services, public procurement markets, competition policy and regulatory harmonisation, that are related directly to EU trading strengths not yet fully addressed by WTO rules or standards.

We have made sure that the economic case for an EU-India FTA is watertight and that there is a similar level of understanding and ambition on India's part, which is necessary for any negotiation to work. To that end, I welcome the committee's support for the High Level Trade Group's work. On 19 September 2006, the High Level Trade Group finalised its report to the EU-India Summit on 13 October 2006, which recommended that an expanded-trade partnership be developed through the negotiation of a broad-based trade and investment agreement.

The summit will recommend that both EU and India move towards negotiations for such an agreement. Although we will not be launching an FTA at the summit, we will, however, be making positive signals that we are heading in that direction. We do not just want to launch but to prepare the ground for successful negotiations. This may mean further work on some of the more sensitive issues after the summit, so that we improve understanding of each other’s expectations and possibilities for movement. Accordingly, I share the committee’s views that there is a need to deepen discussion on services negotiations, intellectual property rights and public procurement.

Finally, I also share the committee’s concern about the low level of intra-regional trade in the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation and its recommendation to SAARC to review opportunities to expand trade and investment in the region. We are following closely the problem of Pakistan’s non-implementation of schedules under the South Asia Free Trade Agreement and addressing this informally with this country.

 
  
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  Filip Kaczmarek (PPE-DE), autor projektu opinii Komisji Rozwoju. – Panie Przewodniczący! Chciałbym serdecznie pogratulować Panu posłowi Karimowi bardzo udanego sprawozdania dotyczącego Indii. Jest to sprawozdanie złożone, tak jak kwestią złożoną jest przedstawienie stosunków gospodarczych, handlowych oraz współpracy Unii Europejskiej z Indiami, przy jednoczesnym zwróceniu uwagi na wyzwania stojące przed tym krajem. Uważam, że sprawozdawca bardzo dobrze poradził sobie z tym problemem.

Doceniając znaczenie kwestii ekonomicznych i gospodarczych w treści sprawozdania, chcę szczególnie podziękować sprawozdawcy za poparcie dla opinii Komisji Rozwoju, za spojrzenie na Indie nie tylko z perspektywy kraju dynamicznego rozwoju gospodarczego, o wielkim potencjale, ważnego partnera handlowego i gospodarczego Europy, ale także z perspektywy kraju o niezwykłej złożoności struktur społecznych, dużej nierówności zarówno w poziomie rozwoju jak i dystrybucji osiąganych zysków.

Jednocześnie Indie są krajem borykającym się z poważnymi problemami typowymi dla krajów rozwijających się, takimi jak walka z ubóstwem czy analfabetyzmem. Jak podkreśliłem w mojej opinii dla Komisji Rozwoju, osiągnięcie milenijnych celów rozwoju oraz walka z ubóstwem winny pozostawać głównym elementem partnerstwa strategicznego między Unią Europejską a Indiami.

Pragnę zwrócić uwagę na dwie istotne z punktu widzenia polityki rozwoju kwestie dotyczące stosunków Unia Europejska-Indie. W Indiach, w których wzrost gospodarczy wynosi średnio 6% rocznie w ciągu ostatnich 10 lat, w dalszym ciągu prawie 30% ludności, tzn. 400 milionów ludzi, żyje poniżej granicy ubóstwa, za mniej niż jednego dolara dziennie, a poziom analfabetyzmu wynosi blisko 40%. Jest kwestią niezwykle istotną, aby współpraca gospodarcza i handlowa między Unią Europejską a Indiami prowadziła do odwrócenia tych złych tendencji i poprawy sytuacji najbardziej ubogiej części społeczeństwa oraz skupiała się na promowaniu najlepszych praktyk z tych regionów, które osiągają największy wzrost gospodarczy, jak również pogłębiała współpracę w dziedzinie edukacji i zdrowia.

 
  
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  Zbigniew Zaleski, w imieniu grupy PPE-DE. – Panie Przewodniczący! Ten dokument ma charakter typowo gospodarczy, ale przesłanie jest szersze dla obu dużych partnerów, a więc polityczne, społeczne, edukacyjne, naukowe, a głównie rozwojowe.

Poza drobnymi różnicami międzyfrakcyjnymi doszliśmy do wspólnych ustaleń, często kompromisowych, i Indie mogą wyczytać z tej rezolucji, że cała Europa wspólnym głosem chce współpracy z tym bogatym w historię i gospodarcze możliwości krajem. Oczywiście z naszej perspektywy jasno podnosimy problemy, z którymi Hindusi się zżyli, ale według europejskich standardów winny one być głośno powiedziane i stopniowo rozwiązywane, a to dlatego, że dla dobrej współpracy między przedsiębiorcami, obywatelami potrzeba wspólnoty wartości i celów, w przeciwnym razie będziemy mieli tylko deklaracje podpisane przez rządy i polityków, a w tym domu powstało wiele takich bez żadnych skutków.

My chcemy realnej współpracy, wykorzystując także dotychczasowe doświadczenia między Europą – głównie Zjednoczonym Królestwem – a Indiami, ale obecnie ma to być współpraca partnerska par excellence, nienacechowana jakimkolwiek echem przeszłości (w domyśle można wyczytać, że chodzi o kolonialną).

Ten dokument będzie podstawą i pomostem zdrowej wymiany, owocny dla obu partnerów. Jako shadow rapporteur proponuję przyjąć ten dokument w obecnej formie.

 
  
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  Erika Mann, on behalf of the PSE Group. – Mr President, I would like to thank the Commissioner, and also thank the rapporteur for this excellent report, which touches on all the issues that are relevant when talking about India.

The Commissioner mentioned one specific point to which I think we should give in-depth consideration, and that is that India might finally become a geopolitical centre in the 21st century. I think he is right about that and the European Union and the Commission will have to make up their minds. You cannot say ‘either India or China’; that is not the right approach. But we will certainly have to focus, because to deal with both countries and many more countries to come as regards bilateral agreements might be something that is impossible for the Commission whilst making sure that the multilateral round flourishes. So I would like to point out to the rapporteur and the House that my Group will be a little more cautious when it comes to a free-trade agreement.

We are not against a free-trade agreement; quite the opposite. We already argued in favour of a free-trade agreement and regional agreement in 2002, when I presented my own report to this House, but I think we should first have an in-depth debate and discussion on the issue. The Commission will produce its new policy report on 4 October, in only a few weeks. So we will not support a free-trade agreement at the moment, because we want to have a debate in our Group first and we want to be clear that Parliament will be fully involved in the debate and the consultation process.

It is important and relevant to see a shift from the multilateral to the more bilateral agreement and to make sure that there is some coherence when it comes to trade policy. That is one of the reasons why tomorrow we are not going to support the idea of a free-trade agreement at this stage. I am happy also that Mr Karim touched on the various high-tech issues. I think it is absolutely essential that we focus more on India and cooperate more closely with it.

Now, everything I said is not on behalf of Glyn Ford, who is the shadow rapporteur. He apologises to Mr Karim for not being here. He has to go back to England, but he will certainly follow up the issues and discuss them in detail.

 
  
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  Margarita Starkevičiūtė, ALDE frakcijos vardu. – Norėčiau padėkoti pranešėjui, kuris aiškiai pažymėjo finansinio sektoriaus svarbą Indijos ekonomikos plėtrai. Šis veiksnys nulemia Indijos ir Europos Sąjungos ekonominio bendradarbiavimo rezultatus. Nemažą įtaką investicijų apimčiai turi investuotojų pasitikėjimas šalyse ir taikomi finansų rinkų reguliavimo ir apskaitos standartai. Todėl reikėtų raginti Indijos verslą pasinaudoti Europos Sąjungos sukaupta patirtimi užtikrinant tinkamą investuotojų apsaugą. Aš norėčiau paprašyti Komisijos, kad ji dažniau propaguotų mūsų sukauptą patirtį, tą Europos Sąjungos finansinio reguliavimo modelį, kurį mes kruopščiai kuriame ir puoselėjame, kad Indijos verslas galėtų pasinaudoti mūsų sukaupta patirtimi. Tuo tikslu Komisijos darbe reikėtų didesnio koordinavimo, kad skirtingų krypčių komisarai dažniau bendrautų ir bendradarbiavimas su trečiomis šalimis nebūtų tik tos srities komisarų užduotis, o būtų užduotis visiems kitiems komisarams taip pat.

Vienas iš didžiųjų iššūkių yra tai, kad Indijos finansinis sektorius nėra pakankamai liberalizuotas. Jis reikalauja daug investicijų, ypatingai siekiant išplėsti veiklą į kaimiškus rajonus. Be kaimiškų rajonų plėtros negalima Indijos pažanga, tačiau ta finansinio sektoriaus plėtra negalima be didžiųjų pasaulio ir Europos bankų atėjimo. Todėl reikėtų skatinti bendradarbiavimą ir Indijos reguliuotojų dalyvavimą bendrose Europos Sąjungos ir trečiųjų šalių ekspertų grupėse ruošiant atitinkamus teisės aktus, kad iš karto būtų numatytos tinkamos sąlygos bendram darbui.

Aš taip pat norėčiau pasisakyti už dvipusį dialogą, visapusiškai ekonominį bendradarbiavimą tarp Europos Sąjungos ir Indijos, susitarimų pasiekimą. Todėl, kad daugiašalės derybos ne visada atspindi specifinius tarpusavio santykių reikalavimus.

 
  
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  Margrete Auken, for Verts/ALE-Gruppen. – Hr. formand! Under vores forrige mødeperiode havde vi en betænkning om EU's handel med Kina. Der var vi meget skrappe i kritikken af Kinas krænkelser af menneskerettighederne. I dag er det så handlen med Indien. Betænkningen er udmærket. Jeg kunne tilslutte mig det meste af, hvad der er blevet sagt, og Verts/ALE-Gruppen stemmer naturligvis for. Men jeg vil alligevel her koncentrere mig om ét stort spørgsmål. Hvorfor er menneskerettighedsproblemerne ikke vigtige her? De omtales, men i helt generelle vendinger. Og det værste problem, vel ét af verdens mest omfattende menneskerettighedsproblemer, er nærmest væk. Jeg tænker naturligvis på de kasteløse, dalitterne. De nævnes, men sammen med adivasierne, som var der bare tale om et almindeligt minoritetsproblem. Dalitterne er en foragtet underklasse i flere lande, men især er det Indiens problem. De er ikke kun fattige og socialt udstødte. Det er værre. De behandles som ikke-mennesker, de er urørlige og afskys af de øvrige befolkningsgrupper. De lever på samfundets bund. Nok har de rettigheder, men kun på papiret. I virkeligheden er de retsløse, og de udfører det mest beskidte og farlige arbejde. Og det er jo det, der er interessant her. Det er dem, der i industri og landbrug arbejder med kemikalier så giftige, at de er forbudte de fleste steder i verden. Uden instrukser og beskyttelse sprøjter de markerne med dødbringende nervegifte. Med bare fødder står de i syrebade og farver vores tekstiler på fabrikkerne. Ingen andre ville finde sig i det, men dalitterne er tvunget til det. Og EU handler med Indiens produkter uden at stille nærgående spørgsmål om deres tilblivelse. Det er en grim historie for Indien, men den er næsten mere pinlig for Europa, som er klar over, hvad der sker - ofte har vi selv solgt dem skidtet. Tusindvis af mennesker skades, mange dør, og de er dalitter. Dalitterne har ikke nogen stemme, ingen fagforening, vi er nødt til at være deres stemme, hvis overgrebene skal stoppes. Vi skal have problemet på EU's dagsorden, og det er beskæmmende, at det ikke er tydeligt med i denne betænkning.

 
  
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  Cristiana Muscardini, a nome del gruppo UEN. – Signor Presidente, onorevoli colleghi, è un ringraziamento sentito quello che rivolgo all'onorevole Karim e a tutta la commissione per il commercio internazionale, hanno fatto un ottimo lavoro per questa relazione.

Il rapido sviluppo economico dell'India, la più popolosa democrazia del mondo con un tasso di crescita del 9 per cento nel solo 2005, rappresenta, anche per le caratteristiche geopolitiche del paese, un'ennesima sfida, per molti versi affascinante, posta all'Unione europea sui mercati internazionali, una sfida che avrà potenziali vantaggi per l'Europa, ma anche possibili rischi.

In India quattrocento milioni di cittadini vivono con meno di un dollaro al giorno. Il settore agricolo impegna, con strutture e mezzi antiquati, il sessantacinque per cento della popolazione. L'energia nucleare è utilizzata solo come deterrente nell'annosa guerra con il vicino Pakistan, è poco sfruttata ai fini dello sviluppo ecocompatibile e questo fa dipendere il paese dall'energia straniera e lo spinge a ricercare nel mondo le fonti energetiche necessarie al suo sviluppo.

L'India è paese di grandi ricchezze e di grandi povertà ed ancor oggi è difficile per le donne trovare un lavoro, ancora meno se qualificato, a parte le mansioni più umili, oppure è difficile per le donne farsi accettare come imprenditrici.

Parlare di India non è semplice data l'immensità del suo territorio e tutte le variabili che questo comporta, ma l'India è anche una grande speranza di una migliore distribuzione del commercio internazionale. L'India è anche un grande paese con un prodotto interno lordo in continua, altissima crescita, con una classe altamente competente in grado di sostenere le nuove sfide internazionali nei settori di avanzata tecnologia. L'economia è sulla via del progresso in molte regioni e si sono aperte le porte agli investimenti stranieri dai quali sembra, però ad oggi, esclusa l'Europa. L'India rappresenta per l'Europa solo l'un per cento del totale dei suoi scambi.

Da qui, per noi, la necessità di concludere un partenariato strategico tra questi due grandi blocchi, inteso a creare un clima più proficuo alla cooperazione, con una migliore conoscenza reciproca che permetta di ridurre le rispettive barriere nel rispetto di regole condivise.

I recenti dissapori emersi a Ginevra nei negoziati del Doah round hanno creato qualche difficoltà, ma India ed Unione europea devono assumersi la responsabilità di rilanciare un quadro multilaterale. Per le sue caratteristiche di paese in avanzato sviluppo, ma con profondi squilibri sociali, il colosso asiatico ha bisogno di una più forte presenza europea, in grado di contribuire a una crescita equilibrata.

Da parte europea deve esserci un approccio leale e aperto, inteso a rafforzare la presenza europea in India con il dovuto sostegno alle nostre iniziative in quell'area del mondo. Quello che occorre, come deve essere fatto anche nei confronti della crescente espansione economica cinese, è la ricerca di una strategia per l'Europa verso il resto del mondo.

Non possiamo esimerci però, dal ricordare la piaga del lavoro minorile, in molti casi infantile, che ha un'incidenza altissima nell'economia indiana, priva di standard minimi di protezione sociale per le categorie più deboli, nonché la divisione della società in caste, che rende difficile la vita e la crescita di una parte della popolazione.

Per questo, nel massimo rispetto per le tradizioni di questo grande paese, dobbiamo chiedere alla classe politica ed economica indiana e alle imprese che operano in India di contribuire con grande responsabilità a lottare con tutti i mezzi contro il fenomeno dei bambini che lavorano invece che studiare, favorendo invece il maggiore sviluppo di un'alfabetizzazione, sicura speranza dei popoli nel futuro.

 
  
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  Bogusław Rogalski, w imieniu grupy IND/DEM. – Panie Przewodniczący! W 2015 roku według analityków gospodarczych azjatycki tygrys, jakim są Indie, stanie się czwartą potęgą światową. Indie staną się ważną przeciwwagą handlową dla Chin. Tempo wzrostu indyjskiej gospodarki w pierwszym kwartale tego roku przyspieszyło do ponad 9%. Przechodząc od pozycji kraju rozwijającego się do statusu kraju rozwiniętego, Indie pretendują do miana lidera w Azji, doganiając Chiny. Dlatego właśnie relacje handlowe z tym krajem powinny być dla nas bardzo ważne. Już teraz Unia Europejska jest największym partnerem handlowym Indii. Handel z państwami członkowskimi Unii stanowi ponad 22% indyjskiego eksportu.

Przemysł indyjski dorósł do światowych wyzwań i przyjmuje rozwój oparty na nauce jako strategię biznesową. Zaletę Indii stanowi duża liczba młodych, wyszkolonych, znających język angielski, niedrogich pracowników. Tę zaletę powinniśmy wykorzystać w naszych bilateralnych stosunkach. Ale są też dziedziny, na które Unia Europejska powinna zwrócić uwagę Indiom. Ponad 390 milionów obywateli Indii żyje za mniej niż jednego dolara dziennie, a kraj ten posiada także jedną z największych na świecie liczbę pracujących dzieci. To musi się zmienić.

Walka z ubóstwem powinna stać się głównym elementem partnerstwa strategicznego pomiędzy Unią Europejską a Indiami. Musimy też dołożyć starań, aby Indie były lepiej reprezentowane w Międzynarodowym Funduszu Walutowym. Dobrym pomysłem byłoby też wyjście z inicjatywą zawarcia porozumienia o wolnym handlu z Indiami, co zacieśniłoby nasze strategiczne partnerstwo handlowe na wiele lat. Sprawozdanie pana Karima jest sprawozdaniem dobrym i wartym wsparcia.

 
  
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  Alessandro Battilocchio (NI). – Signor Presidente, onorevoli colleghi, parlo a nome del nuovo PSI e faccio i complimenti al collega Karim per la condivisibile impostazione della relazione. Come rappresentante del Parlamento europeo e come membro della commissione per lo sviluppo non posso che essere soddisfatto per l'adesione dell'India agli obiettivi di sviluppo del millennio e per l'operato del governo indiano, il quale sta dimostrando da tempo di poter essere un partner affidabile per le eventuali future interazioni e le collaborazioni anche commerciali.

Tuttavia ritengo che gli sforzi finora compiuti per la lotta allo sfruttamento del lavoro minorile, al dumping, specie nel settore tessile e calzaturiero, alla pirateria e per la creazione di uno sviluppo ecocompatibile siano insufficienti e labili.

L'Unione ha il dovere di supportare e incoraggiare l'India affinché problematiche di tali dimensioni siano risolte attraverso le grandi e assai attese riforme strutturali. La più grande democrazia asiatica ha la responsabilità di sviluppare una riforma sociale ben definita, che permette il superamento dell'odierna società di casta la quale comporta ampie ripercussioni negative sia sull'accesso all'istruzione e ai servizi sia sulla condizione più generale in cui versano le donne; equità e pari opportunità, dunque, come target da raggiungere nel medio termine attraverso un impegno serio ed uno sforzo concreto, mentre in campo economico urge una riforma finanziaria adeguata che abolisca le barriere non tariffarie, i dazi nelle importazioni e apra il mercato.

Il miglioramento del sistema potrebbe e dovrebbe, anche attraverso il rafforzamento degli scambi commerciali col Pakistan, portare allo sviluppo di relazioni di pace durature con i paesi vicini e, per quanto concerne il mercato interno, favorire lo sviluppo di scambi e di sinergie tra le differenti regioni oggi caratterizzate da un'enorme disparità socioeconomica.

Su queste basi ed in questa cornice non possiamo che garantire il nostro pieno e convinto appoggio a un paese il quale, dopo essere rimasto a lungo in ginocchio, è pronto ad alzarsi e a giocare la sua partita.

 
  
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  Γεώργιος Παπαστάμκος (PPE-DE). – Κύριε Πρόεδρε, το μέγεθος και ο δυναμικός ρυθμός ανάπτυξης καθιστούν την Ινδία σημαντικό εμπορικό και οικονομικό εταίρο της Ένωσης.

Ως γνωστόν η Ινδία αποτελεί τη μοναδική μεγάλη και δυναμικά αναπτυσσόμενη οικονομία στην Ασία, όπου η Ευρωπαϊκή Ένωση διατηρεί ηγετική θέση με όρους εξωτερικού εμπορίου και εκροών ξένων επενδύσεων. Ωστόσο, το διμερές εμπόδιο είναι ανισομερές, καθώς η Ινδία αποτελεί μόλις τον 10ο κατά σειρά εμπορικό εταίρο της Ένωσης.

Παράλληλα, όμως, θα πρέπει να τονισθεί ότι η Ινδία αποτελεί τον μεγαλύτερο δικαιούχο του συστήματος γενικευμένων προτιμήσεων με προνομιακή πρόσβαση στην αγορά της Ένωσης.

Παρά τη σημειωθείσα θεαματική εξάπλωση της διμερούς συνεργασίας, ο όγκος του εμπορίου και των επενδύσεων υπολείπεται των υφισταμένων δυνατοτήτων. Κατά τη γνώμη μου, θετική εξέλιξη αποτελούν τα αποτελέσματα των διερευνητικών επαφών για μια διμερή συμφωνία εμπορίου και επενδύσεων. Η πραγμάτωση, ωστόσο, της συμφωνίας προϋποθέτει αμοιβαία ισχυρή πολιτική βούληση. Σε καμία περίπτωση όμως μια τέτοια διμερής συμφωνία δεν πρέπει να ερμηνευθεί με όρους ακύρωσης της προσήλωσής μας στον πολυμερισμό. Στο πλαίσιο αυτό θα πρέπει, μεταξύ άλλων, να αντιμετωπιστούν οι υψηλοί εισαγωγικοί δασμοί και οι εκτεταμένοι τεχνικοί φραγμοί που διατηρεί η Ινδία.

Ιδιαίτερης σημασίας είναι και τα ζητήματα κοινού ενδιαφέροντος, όπως η αποτελεσματικότερη προστασία της πνευματικής ιδιοκτησίας και των γεωγραφικών ενδείξεων.

Τέλος, μια σημαντική παράμετρος της ευρύτερης στρατηγικής εταιρικής σχέσης είναι η περαιτέρω στήριξη σε συνέργιες στον τομέα της επιστήμης και της τεχνολογίας. Επί πλέον, αναφέρθηκε σε αυτό και ο κ. Επίτροπος, θα πρέπει να διερευνηθούν και να διευρυνθούν οι προοπτικές για ενδυνάμωση των ενδοπεριφερειακών σχέσεων της Ένωσης με την Ένωση Περιφερειακής Συνεργασίας της Νοτίου Ασίας.

Εν κατακλείδι, θα ήθελα να συγχαρώ τον συνάδελφο κ. Karim για τη δημιουργική συνεισφορά του στο έργο της Επιτροπής Διεθνούς Εμπορίου και εν γένει του Ευρωπαϊκού Κοινοβουλίου.

 
  
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  David Martin (PSE). – Mr President, let me add my congratulations to Mr Karim on an excellent report.

As his report clearly demonstrates, when we are discussing India, the first problem is to decide which India we are discussing. Is it the India with nearly four million households earning over EUR 150 000 a year and with more graduates than any other country? Or is it the India with 390 million people living on less than a dollar a day, where two out of five of people are illiterate and where the so-called IT revolution only touches one in fifty Indians? I hope, as a Parliament, we are interested in both.

If India overcomes its infrastructure problems, most notably its persistent power cuts and poor transport networks, then I believe that within a generation it has the potential to be Europe’s largest trading partner, more important than China or the United States. I therefore welcome what Commissioner Borg said about the High Level Trade Group’s recommendations. I believe we should intensify our trade and investment relations with India. However, at this stage, I agree with Mrs Mann and Mr Papastamkos that we should stop short of a free-trade area, because we would not want India to be used as an example to denigrate the prospect of a successful DDA outcome. We must put our eggs in the DDA basket first and foremost, and anything else should be seen as a digression from that.

Mr Papastamkos rightly points out that 77% of Indian goods come into the EU market duty-free through the GSP. The GSP places an obligation on India to improve its core labour standards. India must do more to tackle child labour and bonded labour, and must sign up to ILO Convention 98 on the right to organise and the right to collective bargaining. India signed up to the Millennium Development Goals and the EU, with our cooperation, should help by facilitating universal education, Eurohealth programmes and policies to get young people from poor areas into work.

I believe that trade and development go hand in hand, but only if we work at it. It will not be automatic. We must have the political will to deliver on both. I welcome the report’s emphasis on both those aspects of our relations with India.

 
  
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  Bastiaan Belder (IND/DEM). – Voorzitter, de economische en handelsrelaties tussen de Europese Unie en India zijn voor beide partners van het grootste belang. Daarom moeten zowel de EU als India zich maximaal inzetten om onnodige barrières weg te nemen. Allereerst dient dit te gebeuren binnen het kader van de Wereldhandelsorganisatie. India moet zich in de G-20 maximaal inzetten om de Doha ontwikkelingsagenda vlot te trekken. Het multilaterale handelssysteem biedt juist ook een land als India enorme kansen. Het land zal daarom een redelijk bod op tafel moeten leggen in de vorm van verlaging van zijn invoertarieven.

Overigens moet de kwestie van de invoertarieven zeker ook op bilateraal niveau besproken worden. De Europese Commissie onderstreept keer op keer het belang van goede bilaterale akkoorden en ik doe dat ook. Zowel de tarifaire als de niet-tarifaire barrières vormen een wezenlijke belemmering voor Europese bedrijven. Ik roep de Indiaanse autoriteiten op een einde te maken aan deze protectionistische politiek.

 
  
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  Eija-Riitta Korhola (PPE-DE). – Arvoisa puhemies, EU:lla on Intian suurimpana kauppakumppanina luonnollinen kiinnostus maan talouden kehitystä kohtaan. Uutiset ovatkin viime aikoina olleet hyviä. Intian talouskasvu on ollut nopeaa, lapsityövoiman vähentämiseen on sitouduttu ja Intia on yksi polkumyynnin vastaisten toimien aktiivisimmista käyttäjistä. Intia pyrkii myös uudistamaan rahoitusalaansa ja suunnittelee rupialle asetettujen rajoitusten poistoa. Myös EU:n ja Intian välillä käynnissä oleva ihmisoikeusvuoropuhelu on alkanut rohkaisevasti. Intian kansallinen ihmisoikeuskomissio on toiminut tarkasti.

Samaan aikaan tapahtuu myös huolestuttavaa kehitystä. Kaupunkien ja maaseudun välinen elintasokuilu kasvaa ja ympäristön kuormitus lisääntyy. Lähes 400 miljoonaa intialaista, noin kolmasosa maan väestöstä, elää alle yhden dollarin päiväansioilla. 40 prosenttia väestöstä on lukutaidottomia, valtaisa talouskasvu jakautuu hyvin epätasaisesti. Osaltaan epätasaiseen jakautumiseen ja jopa talouskasvumahdollisuuksien heikentymiseen vaikuttaa maassa yhä jatkuva kastijärjestelmään pohjautuva syrjintä. Pahimmassa asemassa ovat kastittomat dalitit, joiden oikeuksien toteutumista viranomaiset eivät valvo tarpeeksi tehokkaasti.

Arvostan sitä, että maailman suurin demokratia pyrkii korjaamaan lainsäädännöllään aktiivisesti niitä epäkohtia, joita yhteiskunnassa havaitaan. Niin sanottu positiivinen diskriminointi on esimerkki tästä. Mutta lainsäädäntö ei riitä, vaan on panostettava myös toimeenpanoon. Hyvät poliittiset päätökset tulisi paikallisten viranomaisten puolelta ajaa järjestelmällisesti myös käytäntöön. Tilanteen jatkuessa jää käyttämättä suuri osa Intian kansan potentiaalista ja taidoista.

Esitän samalla vakavan pyynnön neuvostolle, että se nostaisi Intian vähäosaisten aseman, ympäristöongelmat ja valmiuden selviytyä luonnon katastrofeista Helsingissä järjestettävän EU:n ja Intian välisen huippukokouksen esityslistalle. Myös keväällä aloitettua energiavuoropuhelua on jatkettava, sillä Intian tulevan talouskasvun tärkein määrittäjä on kyky täyttää huimasti kasvava energiakysyntä.

 
  
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  Kader Arif (PSE). – Monsieur le Président, chers collègues, à quelques semaines du prochain sommet Union européenne-Inde, il faut saluer l'engagement de l'Europe à s'investir davantage dans sa coopération avec l'Inde. Cette grande démocratie est l'un de nos partenaires privilégiés en Asie, mais surtout un acteur aux responsabilités régionales, mais aussi mondiales, sans cesse croissantes. C'est pour cela que je remercie mon collègue Karim de rappeler que nos rapports avec l'Inde ne se limitent pas au seul domaine commercial, mais qu'ils sont riches d'une coopération approfondie dans une multitude de domaines.

L'Inde s'est engagée dans des réformes importantes en matière de promotion des objectifs du millénaire pour le développement, même si cela peut paraître parfois insuffisant. Elle s'est engagée pour la protection de l'environnement, l'application des normes internationales en matière de droit du travail, la lutte contre la pauvreté et la lutte contre le sida. De telles initiatives doivent être encouragées et soutenues par une volonté politique forte et des moyens financiers à la hauteur des besoins de ce pays continent.

Une coopération universitaire renforcée entre l'Inde et l'Union européenne est certes indispensable, mais nous devons veiller à tout prix à contrer une éventuelle fuite des cerveaux qui priverait ce pays de sa plus grande richesse. N'oublions pas que nos relations doivent être guidées par la notion de partenariat et d'échange mutuel. Nous ne pouvons donc pas considérer l'Inde seulement comme un vaste réservoir de main-d'œuvre bon marché.

La vision optimiste que nous avons de notre future coopération avec l'Inde ne doit pas cacher une réalité encore difficile. Comme cela est souligné dans ce rapport, certains secteurs de l'économie indienne sont très fragiles. Je pense en particulier à l'agriculture qui subit les contrecoups d'une libéralisation commerciale non maîtrisée. C'est pourquoi je m'étonne – et je rejoins en cela ce qui a été exprimé par différents collègues – que soit proposée la conclusion d'un accord de libre-échange. Non seulement une telle décision serait prématurée, mais je me dois de rappeler que l'Union européenne s'est engagée à agir prioritairement dans le cadre du cycle de Doha. Parler dès maintenant de soutenir les négociations bilatérales irait contre les principes que nous affirmons depuis des mois et serait un bien mauvais signal pour l'édifice multilatéral que nous appelons de nos vœux.

Je conclus. Si notre objectif est bien celui d'un commerce au service du développement, alors nos relations commerciales devront être conçues de manière concertée et graduelle dans un cadre rationnel et prévisible avec notre partenaire.

 
  
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  Charles Tannock (PPE-DE). – Mr President, the EU’s strategic partnership with democratic India is of vital importance for both the EU and India. I welcome the strengthening of political and economic dialogue and engagement as well as discussions on human rights at the India-EU Summit on 13 October. However, given the astonishing recent growth of India’s economy and its emerging global big-power status, our partnership must now deepen. Therefore I strongly favour a bilateral India-EU free trade agreement. That would have mutually beneficial results as our economies are complementary, as India needs our high-tech finished products and we need their services and basic machinery. We are already India’s biggest trading partner, at some EUR 40 billion annually, and we collaborate now on high-tech projects such as Galileo and ITER, demonstrating the sophistication of India’s 8% annual growth economy.

I also call for enhanced regional cooperation and economic integration of India and Pakistan with SAARC and SAFTA, which enhances the confidence-building measures between the two states which, until recently, were on the verge of war. The line of control between the divided regions of Jammu and Kashmir could eventually be just a line on the map, if people, goods and services could flow freely.

Pakistan should desist from its restrictive positive list of freely traded goods and change to a more liberal negative list as expected by MFN and SAFTA rules. India is fast becoming the prime south-Asian geopolitical player and it is high time that the UN Security Council admitted the largest democracy in the world to its ranks as a permanent member. China is our second largest trading partner, but the EU does not share the same fundamental values with it as we do with India. That fact needs greater recognition in this House.

Coming from Britain, with our traditional links to India, I commend the Karim report and call on the Commission to develop a much deeper political and economic India-EU relationship culminating in a bilateral free trade agreement.

 
  
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  Παναγιώτης Μπεγλίτης (PSE). – Κύριε πρόεδρε, θα ήθελα κι εγώ με τη σειρά μου να συγχαρώ τον συνάδελφο κ. Karim για την πραγματικά πάρα πολύ σημαντική έκθεση που μας παρουσίασε.

Όμως, κύριε Πρόεδρε και κύριοι συνάδελφοι, θα ήθελα να θίξω ένα άλλο θέμα. Ασφαλώς όλοι υποστηρίζουμε την ανάπτυξη μιας στρατηγικής εταιρικής σχέσης με την Ινδία. Η Ινδία είναι μια ισχυρή αναδυόμενη οικονομία, ένας νέος γεωστρατηγικός πόλος στην ευρύτερη περιοχή της Ασίας. Για να μπορεί να είναι όμως αυτή η σχέση επωφελής και για την Ευρωπαϊκή Ένωση, δεν αρκεί μόνο να επιχαίρουμε για μια στατιστική υπεροχή που έχει η Ευρωπαϊκή Ένωση απέναντι στην Ινδία, στο θέμα του εμπορικού ισοζυγίου, στο θέμα των άμεσων ξένων επενδύσεων, στο θέμα της μεταφοράς τεχνολογίας. Χρειάζεται, κύριοι συνάδελφοι, μια κοινή στρατηγική της Ευρωπαϊκής Ένωσης, που θα υπερβαίνει τα επί μέρους εθνικά συμφέροντα των κρατών μελών. Η πρόσφατη περίπτωση της Mittal-Arcelor δείχνει ότι δεν πρέπει να ακολουθήσουμε σε ευρωπαϊκό επίπεδο αυτήν τη διαίρεση μεταξύ επί μέρους συμφερόντων της Ευρωπαϊκής Ένωσης.

Η Ινδία, όπως είπαμε, είναι ένας πολύ σημαντικός παράγοντας. Πρέπει όμως να δούμε και την άλλη πλευρά. Η Ινδία αυτή τη στιγμή έχει υπογράψει συμφωνία στον τομέα της πυρηνικής ενέργειας με τις Ηνωμένες Πολιτείες, που διαμορφώνει ένα νέο πλαίσιο και ένα νέο συσχετισμό ισχύος στην περιοχή της Ασίας. Πρέπει να ζητήσουμε από την Ινδία την υπογραφή της Συνθήκης "Μη διάδοσης των πυρηνικών όπλων". Είναι πολύ σοβαρό για τις μελλοντικές σχέσεις μας με την Ινδία.

Από την άλλη πλευρά πρέπει να αντιληφθούμε ότι η Ινδία έχει ένα σοβαρό μερίδιο ευθύνης στην αποτυχία του Γύρου της Ντόχα στο πλαίσιο του Παγκόσμιου Οργανισμού Εμπορίου. Είναι η Ινδία που χρησιμοποιεί καταχρηστικά τους κανόνες αντιντάμπινγκ, είναι η Ινδία που χρησιμοποιεί το κοινωνικό και το περιβαλλοντικό ντάμπινγκ. Αυτά όλα τα θέματα πρέπει να τα θέσουμε προς την πλευρά της Ινδίας, εάν θέλουμε πραγματικά ένα λειτουργικό, αποτελεσματικό και δημοκρατικό πολυμερές εμπορικό σύστημα.

 
  
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  Geoffrey Van Orden (PPE-DE). – Mr President, I wish to begin by congratulating Mr Karim on the excellent and extensive report on the EU’s economic and trade relations with India. We neglect the relationship with India, with its opportunities for both India and Europe, to our mutual cost.

In the future, if the EU concentrates more of its efforts on economic policy instead of other distractions, I see the potential for a massive free-trading alliance. The United Kingdom, with its historic links, will play a key role in this development. I am therefore delighted that the British Conservative Leader, David Cameron, is devoting particular attention to relations with India. He seized the opportunity while with the business community in Mumbai recently to set out his views on globalisation. He also touched on the challenge of terrorism.

Terrorism is the curse of our age. If afflicts many European countries. It has become a tragic fact of life in India as well, not just in Kashmir but in Mumbai where 200 people were murdered in July and in Malegaon on 8 September 2006, where some 40 people were killed. The precise responsibility for these attacks is still unclear, but there is strong suspicion of external involvement.

Post-9/11, Pakistan has helped the democracies to fight terrorism along its western border with Afghanistan, but it has done precious little to dismantle the infrastructure of terrorism on its eastern border with India or to control the extremist madrassas that provide the hotbed in which terrorists are cultivated.

In order to proceed with the welcome and ongoing peace process between India and Pakistan, Pakistan must implement the solemn assurances it has given to stop all cross-border terrorism and to deliver on the words of President Musharraf in this Parliament on 12 September 2006.

As one of the great democracies, India attracts the rage of extremists. This threat can be defeated only by the concerted efforts of our nations and agencies working together in close cooperation.

I welcome the opportunities we have for deep engagement with India and for India’s wider regional role.

 
  
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  Bogdan Golik (PSE). – Panie Przewodniczący! Na początku serdeczne gratulacje dla posła sprawozdawcy w związku ze sprawozdaniem. Dwa lata temu Komisja i Parlament rozpoczęły nowy rozdział w stosunkach Unia-Indie nazywając to partnerstwem strategicznym. Dwa lata temu uczestniczyłem ze strony Parlamentu w misji do Indii, w przygotowaniu tego szczytu wierząc, że Indie staną się naszym strategicznym partnerem.

Wydawało się, że jest to naturalny wybór. Dwie największe demokracje świata, łącznie ponad 1,5 miliarda ludzi, mogą stworzyć nowy układ gospodarczy na świecie. Wtedy obiecywaliśmy sobie wzrost wzajemnych inwestycji, wymiany handlowej, wymiany młodzieży, współpracy między uczelniami i firmami. Czy tak nie powinno być i czy to realizujemy? Czy dla Unii Europejskiej, która chce utrzymać miejsce w czołówce peletonu świata, mając dzisiaj lekką zadyszkę, najważniejszym partnerem i rynkiem zbytu nie powinien być kraj miliarda ludzi, który ma trwały wzrost gospodarczy na poziomie 7%, a 50% populacji jest poniżej dwudziestego roku życia?

A czy tak się stało? Niestety nie. Gdzie nasza strategia wymiany młodzieży i inwestycji? Nie ma jej, ponieważ kilka krajów wymyśliło sobie Rosję jako partnera strategicznego, który ma ponad 150 milionów ludzi, a średnia wieku zbliża się do pięćdziesiątki, ale za to skutecznie potrafi szantażować Europę odcięciem gazu i energii. Apeluję do Komisji i Parlamentu Europejskiego o rewizję polityki i trzymanie się podpisanych umów w ramach partnerstwa strategicznego Unia-Indie.

 
  
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  Czesław Adam Siekierski (PPE-DE). – Panie Przewodniczący! Pomimo wzrostu gospodarczego 5% - 7% rocznie Indie wciąż są państwem o wyraźnych kontrastach. 65% ludności pracującej zajmuje się rolnictwem, a blisko 70% zamieszkuje tereny wiejskie. Z jednej strony kraj ten plasuje się w czołówce pod względem osób utalentowanych w dziedzinie inżynierii, informatyki i nauki, z drugiej zaś strony, około 1/3 ludności jest niepiśmienna, a duża jej część żyje w ubóstwie.

Te kontrasty dają Indiom unikalną mieszankę korzyści kooperatywnych, włączając w to zasoby taniej tak nisko, jak i wysoko wykwalifikowanej siły roboczej. Z ponad jednym miliardem ludności, jako czwarta pod względem wielkości gospodarka świata, Indie powinny być dla Unii atrakcyjnym kierunkiem inwestycji, handlu. Potencjał ten nie jest w pełni wykorzystywany przez unijne firmy, które wydaje się, że mocno preferują Chiny. Unijna wymiana handlowa z Indiami stanowi mniej niż 20% tej z Chinami. Dane te sugerują, że istnieje ogromny niewykorzystany potencjał, ale niezbędne jest ograniczenie wysokich ceł na importowane towary z Unii do Indii, a także zmniejszenie barier pozataryfowych.

Unia poszła już na znaczne ustępstwa w ramach negocjacji WTO. Władze Indii powinny dążyć do zmniejszenia biurokracji, która jest utrudnieniem dla inwestycji zagranicznych. Szczególne zaniedbania w inwestycjach transportowych i energetycznych hamują rozwój, a one mogłyby się stać atrakcyjnym obszarem dla inwestycji zagranicznych. Unia ze swoim doświadczeniem mogłaby pomóc rozwiązywać problem wielkiej nierównowagi rozwoju regionalnego w Indiach, gdzie zachodnia i południowa część kraju znacznie różnią się od wschodniej i północnej.

Rozwijając wymianę handlową musimy działać na rzecz przestrzegania praw człowieka w Indiach i jest to ważny temat do rozmowy na zbliżającym się szczycie październikowym.

 
  
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  Libor Rouček (PSE). – Dámy a pánové, přímé zahraniční investice jsou důležitým nástrojem rozvoje každé země. Pocházím z nové členské země Evropské unie a mohu právě potvrdit, že to byly přímé zahraniční investice, které mají významný podíl na současném dynamickém hospodářském růstu, který vidíme právě ve střední a východní Evropě. A nejinak je tomu i v případě Indie. Indie je třetí nejatraktivnější zemí světa, co se přísunu zahraničních investic týče a Evropa je v Indii jedním z nejvýznamnějších zdrojů přísunu těchto investic. V roce 2004 činila tato částka více než 1 miliardu eur. Avšak i přes tento pozitivní trend a mnohá zlepšení nelze nevidět, že zahraniční investoři se musí potýkat v Indii stále se značnými problémy. Musí zápasit s komunální, regionální i státní byrokracií, s neprůhlednými a často se měnícími předpisy, do mnohých odvětví jako např. do zemědělství nemohou investovat vůbec. Chtěl bych proto vyzvat indické úřady a indické politiky k ulehčení současné situace a k dalšímu zjednodušení přístupu zahraničních investorů na indický trh. Jak ukazuje právě úspěšný příklad střední a východní Evropy, vydělají na tom nejenom investoři, ale právě ta země, do které investice plynou, v našem případě Indie.

 
  
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  Joe Borg, Member of the Commission. Mr President, thank you for your comments, from which it is clear that we all attach great importance to comprehensive relations between the Union and India.

Only last week, on 19 September 2006, the EU-India High Level Trade Group finalised its report to the 13 October 2006 EU-India Summit and concluded that an expanded trade partnership should be developed through the negotiation of a broad-based trade and investment agreement. This forms the basis for the High Level Trade Group's recommendation to the EU-India Summit. It augurs well for an agreement at the summit that there is a strong case for launching bilateral FTA negotiations and that the parties are ready to take the necessary steps to start negotiations.

The areas forming the basis of bilateral EU-India relations, as covered by the three EU-India Subcommittee meetings, range from economic policy, dialogue and cooperation, including on industrial policy, science and technology, finance and monetary affairs, the environment, clean development and climate change, energy cooperation, information and communication technologies, civil aviation, maritime transport, space technology, agriculture and marine policy, customs, employment and social policy, business cooperation and development cooperation, to trade and investment and the bringing together of peoples and cultures. Many of those areas will no doubt form the subject of discussions at the EU-India Business Summit on 12 October 2006 and the Political Summit on 13 October 2006, with a view to making progress in all areas of EU-India relations.

It is in our mutual interest to build on a rich history of experience and partnership with India. The issue of the free trade agreement with India presents us with a number of possibilities. An agreement with India would present various advantages, such as the consolidation of the European Union's privileged position in an important and growing market. India is the only major emerging economy with the European Union as both its largest trading partner and its largest investor. Whilst there have been sizeable reforms, access to India's market is still very restricted, with applied tariffs in certain sectors at over 30% and many caps on foreign direct investment (FDI) in the services sector. The reduction of tariffs for EU companies and the liberalisation of trade in services would secure access to a rapidly growing market and thereby contribute to competitiveness.

A secondary benefit would be to lock in India's economic reforms to the advantage of its and the region's long-term economic growth. The visibility and economic benefits of an FTA with the European Union would support India's programme of reforms and provide a more stable investment climate.

The Doha development agenda does not preclude bilateral free trade agreements, and the conclusion of such free trade agreements does not and would not prejudice the completion of the Doha development agenda. The European Union and India remain committed to the rules-based multilateral trading system. The successful outcome of the DDA multilateral trade negotiations remains their foremost trade-policy priority. India and the Union will continue to collaborate closely on mutual interests and to play leading roles regarding the DDA.

In the speech which Commissioner Mandelson delivered in Berlin on 18 September 2006, he indicated that the central strand of the October trade policy review would argue that the EU should seek to build on and complement its commitment to the multilateral trading system with a new generation of bilateral free trade agreements with key growing markets.

While Europe continues to be highly competitive in global export markets, European companies are losing ground in the highest technology products and the fastest growing markets. In rapidly growing regions such as Asia, the European Union is underperforming. There is now a case for new bilateral free trade agreements designed to deliver more open markets. FTAs can build on WTO multilateral liberalisation by addressing areas, such as trade and services, public procurement and competition policy, that are not yet fully addressed by WTO rules. In this respect, the deepening of EU-India bilateral trade relations supports the larger multilateral trading regime.

Finally, as many of you have said during the discussion, strengthening EU-India relations represents a great hope: that of reducing the wealth gap existing in that country, of improving the conditions for workers and ensuring better standards of protection for all workers, in particular for women and children, and of improving the quality of life of the Indian people in general which, as has rightly been pointed out, is still such that 190 million people live on less than USD 1 a day.

 
  
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  Πρόεδρος. – Η συζήτηση έληξε.

Η ψηφοφορία θα διεξαχθεί αύριο, Πέμπτη, στις 12 το μεσημέρι.

Στο σημείο αυτό η συνεδρίαση διακόπτεται και, από τις 5.30 μ.μ., μπορείτε να παρακολουθήσετε τη Διάσκεψη των Προέδρων, ανοικτή σε όλους τους βουλευτές, στην οποία θα παρίσταται ο Πρωθυπουργός του Λιβάνου κ. Siniora προκειμένου να γίνει ανταλλαγή απόψεων σχετικά με την κατάσταση στη Μέση Ανατολή.

Γραπτές δηλώσεις (άρθρο 142)

 
  
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  Glyn Ford (PSE). – First, let me congratulate Mr Karim on his report on EU-India trade relations. In contrast to last month’s debate on EU-China relations, his work and report have been a model of cooperation and consensus and my Group and I will be supporting his report. I only have to apologise that I will be absent for tomorrow’s vote, as I will be attending the Labour Party Conference in Manchester.

I have one general comment and two specific points on the report. First, we in the PSE Group do not want any hint that a bilateral FTA can substitute for a successful completion of the Doha Development Round. We know India is committed in this regard, but not all MEPs share that commitment.

Secondly, while I offered a guarded welcome to back liberalisation, I share some of Mr Markov’s concerns as to the social impact on small farmers and businesses as preferential lending will end. If Mr Markov’s amendment had been more judiciously phrased it would have gained my support.

Thirdly, I do not welcome India’s involvement in ITER. I believe the whole ITER Programme is mistaken and would have been delighted if it had gone to Japan so they would have wasted more of their money and we less of ours. I can only commiserate with the people of India.

 
  
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  James Nicholson (PPE-DE). – Given the strong ties which exist between my own Member State and India, I am naturally keen that the EU does all in its power to help India realise its enormous potential for economic development. Having had the privilege to visit India on a number of occasions, I have been deeply impressed by the rate of economic development there over recent years and particularly in key 21st century industries such as information technology.

I am pleased at the progress which was made in building dialogue at the sixth India-EU summit last year. Improving economic and trade relations will prove to be of mutual benefit to both the EU and India, but it is essential that a key objective of our contribution to economic development is the eradication of poverty. This must be maintained as a top priority of our strategic partnership. I congratulate the rapporteur on his report.

 
  
  

(Η συνεδρίαση διακόπτεται στις 5.30 μ.μ., και επαναλαμβάνεται στις 9 μ.μ.)

 
  
  

VORSITZ: SYLVIA-YVONNE KAUFMANN
Vizepräsidentin

 
Ostatnia aktualizacja: 24 listopada 2006Informacja prawna