Financial Express | 9 January 2024
India-UK FTA: Next round of talks for free trade agreement from Wednesday
The next round of talks for the proposed Free Trade Agreement (FTA) between India and the UK will start here from Wednesday to resolve remaining issues and conclude the negotiations, an official said.
The 13th round of negotiations for the proposed pact was held between September 18 and December 15. “The UK and India will continue to negotiate towards a comprehensive and ambitious FTA. The 14th round of negotiations will take place here from Wednesday,” the official said.
These negotiations would focus on complex issues in the areas of goods, services, and investment. Issues that are pending include duty cuts on electric vehicles, whiskey, and the movement of professionals.
Talks are also progressing on the proposed Bilateral Investment Treaty (BIT). India and the UK launched the talks for an FTA in January 2022 with a view to boost economic ties between the two nations.
There are 26 chapters in the agreement, which include goods, services, investments and intellectual property rights. The Indian industry is demanding greater access for its skilled professionals from sectors like IT, and healthcare in the UK market, besides market access for several goods at zero customs duties.
The bilateral trade between India and the UK increased to USD 20.36 billion in 2022-23 from USD 17.5 billion in 2021-22.