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Decks for FTA with SACU cleared

Financial Express, India

Decks for FTA with SACU cleared

Economy Bureau

29 July 2006

NEW DELHI, JULY 28: The Cabinet on Thursday cleared a proposal for a framework agreement aimed at promoting expansion of trade and providing a mechanism to negotiate a Comprehensive Free Trade Agreement (CFTA), within a reasonable time, for cooperation between India and the South Africa Customs Union (SACU).
India’s total trade with SACU countries was valued at $3.15 billion during 2004-05. This consists of India’s exports to these countries worth $1 billion and India’s imports from SACU countries worth $2.15 billion.

The agreement is expected to promote trade and economic cooperation between India and SACU members including Botswana, Lesotho, Namibia, South Africa and Swaziland and provide greater market access to India in SACU region.

The agreement is based on a Joint Working Group’s (JWG) recommendations and comprises of government representatives from both sides.

It was set up in 2002 to examine the proposal in detail and to prepare a Draft Framework Agreement with a provision for a Preferential Trade Agreement (PTA) to increase mutual trade and investment flows between the two countries.