India focuses on more FTAs; goes beyond trade

  • August 25, 2023
  • News

India is open to more free trade agreements, and the focus of future agreements will go beyond trade, according to Sunil Barthwal, Secretary, of the Department of Commerce.

India is likely to sign off on more FTAs (Free Trade Agreements) as many countries are approaching, but India will look at the strategic needs before signing the agreement. Chile and Peru, the two Latin American countries have shown their interest in signing FTA with India. Bangladesh and Sri Lanka are also in the pipeline.
At present, India is finalizing its FTA with the UK and after the discussion and negotiation, the process is expected to be completed by the year end.

In the case of Australia with whom India signed IAECA (India-Australia Economic Cooperation Agreement) last year in December 2022, is now working on the terms for the Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement (CEPA).
Last year, the United Arab Emirates and India entered into a CEPA, which witnessed trade between the countries increased 16% to $84.5 billion in FY23 from $72.9 billion in FY22.

The Ministry said that the discussion is quite positive with Canada, European Union and the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework.