China has rejected India’s proposal for bilateral trade in local currencies, an idea aimed at bridging the widening trade deficit with the former. The issue was discussed in October in an interministerial meeting, where the Reserve Bank of India and the Department of Economic Affairs were urged to explore renminbi-rupee trade.

India’s exports to China were worth $13.4 bn and imports aggregated to $76.4 bn in 2017-18, leaving a trade deficit of $63 bn. It was $51.11 bn in 2016-17. India has also proposed trade in national currencies with other countries, including Russia, Iran and Venezuela with which New Delhi has a trade deficit.