Petroleum, automobiles, textiles and steel are some of the key sectors that could be the focus areas under the Supply Chain Resilience Initiative (SCRI), which was launched by India, Australia and Japan in September, according to sources.
The SCRI seeks to enhance the resilience of supply chains in the Indo-Pacific region and develop dependable sources of supply and attract investment.
"Some of the possible sectors that could be looked at from the perspective of the volume of trade in all categories of goods (raw materials, intermediates, capital goods and consumer goods) and services of the 3 countries are petroleum and petrochemicals, auto and auto components, and steel and its products," they said.
The other sectors include pharmaceuticals, medical devices, marine products, tourism and travel services, financial services, information technology and skill development.
"However, intense stakeholder consultations would be required to fine-tune this list," they added.
The key features of the initiative, originally piloted by Japan and based on bilateral discussions, are enhancing the resiliency of supply chain in the Indo-Pacific region including diversification of supply sources and increase competitiveness of sectors. It will also attract foreign direct investment (FDI) in the region and strengthen mutually complementary relationship among the participants.
One of the sources said SCRI is also planning to finalise "Track 1.5" participants to involve industry, academia and government, besides exploring inclusion of like-minded countries to build secure supply chains in the region.
The source added that a trilateral framework at the senior official level between the three proponents (Australia, India and Japan) could be considered with certain working structures. That includes formation of sectoral groups, trilateral trade promotion and facilitation cell, and trilateral mechanism to address trade and investment barriers, the source said.
While the broad objective of the initiative is to promote, expand and diversify trade and investment, the specific action plans include digitisation of trade documentation, activities for promotion of trade and investment and identification of sectors for cooperation, among others.
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