Mumbai, November 3: With the cracks deepening in the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) in Maharashtra, Shiv Sena has furthered its revolt against senior ally Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) by opposing a multilateral trade deal to which India is likely to be a signatory. Sena supremo Uddhav Thackeray on Sunday slammed the Narendra Modi government for its stand on the RCEP, claiming that the trade pact would adversely impact domestic manufacturers and farmers.
"India is about to sign an agreement Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), tomorrow. Small business are going to be adversely affected by it. It is important that the conditions accepted to sign this pact are made public," Uddhav Thackeray said, joining the Opposition chorus against the RCEP. RCEP Trade Deal Will Be Third Jolt to Economy After Demonetisation and GST, Will Encourage 'Made in China': Jairam Ramesh.
Thackeray, while speaking to reporters, reiterated that his party is exploring non-BJP options to form the government in Maharashtra. While the Sena wants to adhere to "coalition dharma", it would not continue if the BJP backtracks on its "50:50 power-sharing commitment".
Update by ANI:
Uddhav Thackeray, Shiv Sena: India is about to sign an agreement Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), tomorrow. Small business are going to be adversely affected by it. It is important that the conditions accepted to sign this pact are made public. https://t.co/33wgU2ICDX
— ANI (@ANI) November 3, 2019
On the RCEP, Shiv Sena is the only member of the NDA camp which has opposed the Centre's consideration of the pact. The Opposition, led by the Congress, has threatened to launch nationwide protest if India becomes a signatory to the 16-nation pact.
The multilateral trade deal would end up quashing imports on 90 per cent of the goods traded between these nations. Since the conglomeration includes China, the Opposition parties have argued that it would further flood the Indian market with the Chinese goods. This would hurt the business interests of the domestic establishments, and would also widen the fiscal deficit with Beijing, which now stands at 54 billion USD.