New Delhi, Sep 9

India and China have agreed to set up working groups to promote exports from India in view of its increasing trade deficit, Commerce Minister Suresh Prahu said on Saturday.

"Concerned about growing trade deficit with China, we agreed to set up industry specific working groups to promote more exports from India," Prabhu said in a tweet.

Prabhu had earlier said his ministry is looking at ways to quickly boost India's exports which are currently facing "challenging times", partly on account of the implementation of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) from July.

"Exports to GDP ratio has to rise... so we are at a crash intervention sort of a thing. We are trying to work out what is to be done to promote exports in a shortest possible time which includes issues coming up because of the GST," he had said earlier.

The Minister, who took charge of the Commerce and Industry portfolio after cabinet reshuffle, said exporters are facing certain issues in the GST regime, which the ministry is taking up with the concerned authorities.

After rising for 10 months in succession, Indian merchandise exports in July fell 6.84 per cent to $21.69 billion compared to $23.28 billion in the corresponding month of 2015. Exports in June at $23.56 billion had grown by 4.39 per cent over the same month of 2016.

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