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India Seeks Revenue-Sharing Pact With China Under RCEP

India is pushing for a revenue-sharing agreement with China under the proposed mega trade deal RCEP to ensure that domestic film producers get their rightful dues from revenue generated by showing Bollywood movies in China, an official said.

Currently, Bollywood movies make good money in China but due to the absence of any revenue-sharing agreement, domestic film producers often do not get the due share from the huge profits generated in the neighboring country from the movies, the official added.

The Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) is a mega free-trade agreement being negotiated by 16 countries, comprising 10-member ASEAN group (Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, Singapore, Thailand, the Philippines, Laos and Vietnam), India, China, Japan, South Korea, Australia, and New Zealand.

“India wants this agreement as part of the services sector negotiations with China as Indian movies are more popular there as compared to other member countries of RCEP bloc,” the official added.

Though the revenue-sharing agreement is a private contract, a formal agreement under RCEP would help Indian film producers get a better deal in China.

“It is part of negotiations. By this agreement, we would be creating a framework. They (China) are using our content and making huge money. So, they should pay the royalty for usage of the content,” the official said.

Foreign films in China cannot be released without the permission of the government film agencies.

Aamir Khan-starrer Dangal was a super-hit in China and raked in over Rs 1,100 crore. His other movies including PK, and Secret Superstar were also hit in the Chinese market.

The RCEP aims to cover goods, services, investments, economic and technical cooperation, competition and intellectual property rights.

The 25th round of negotiations are scheduled in mid-February in Indonesia.

The main issues that need resolution include a number of goods on which import duties should be completely eliminated and norms to relax services trade among the 16-member countries.

Under the services, India wants greater market access for its professionals in the proposed agreement.

Trade experts have warned that India should negotiate the agreement carefully, as it has trade deficit with as many as 10 RCEP members, including China, South Korea and Australia, among others.

India wants to have a balanced RECP trade agreement as it would cover 40 percent of the global GDP and over 42 percent of the world’s population.

India already has a free-trade pact with the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN), Japan and South Korea. It is also negotiating a similar agreement with Australia and New Zealand but has no such plans for China.―The Pioneer

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