India And Bangladesh Revisit FTA Talks
Tuesday, March 9, 2010
Bangladesh’s Prime Minister Hasina Wazed, has said that stalled talks
towards a free trade agreement with India will be revisited this month. Both
sides have been discussing the removal of all barriers to bilateral trade -
allowing greater market access to Bangladeshi exports, which the Bangladeshi
side has said have been inhibited by tariffs thus far.
The announcement follows the official visit to New Delhi by Hasina in January,
where it was agreed by both countries for work to begin in earnest towards the
removal of all barriers to bilateral trade - both tariff and non-tariff –
through the signing of a free trade agreement.
Last month, Shri Vishambhar Saran, president of Indian Chamber of Commerce
(ICC), and Matlub Ahmad, president of India-Bangladesh Chamber of Commerce and
Industry (IBCCI), signed a landmark agreement, the Dhaka declaration, at the
end of the India-Bangladesh Investment Conclave seminar. The Dhaka declaration
sets out areas where the two countries will target resources to facilitating
greater trade flows, including improving infrastructure.
Trade delegations will begin discussions at the end of March, and according
to Indian reports, will initially focus on tariffs placed on goods. Services
will be brought under the free trade regime at a later date.