Reuters - Tuesday, 12 September 2006
Mauritius to sign trade deals with India, Pak
PORT LOUIS: Mauritius expects to sign trade deals with India and Pakistan in October and November, according to minutes of a cabinet meeting seen yesterday.
The Preferential Trade Agreement with India - potentially worth tens of millions of dollars - is part of a broader Comprehensive Economic Co-operation and Partnership Agreement.
"Cabinet has taken note that the Preferential Trade Agreement (PTA) between Mauritius and India had been finalised," the official minutes of Friday’s cabinet meeting said.
The deal, to be signed next month when India’s minister of commerce and industry visits the Indian Ocean island, includes duty-free access and concessions on dozens of products.
The minutes did not mention the key issues of rum and textiles. Mauritius had requested India to triple a 1mn garment quota already agreed.
India’s exports to Mauritius reached Rs6.9bn ($228mn) in 2004, while Mauritian exports to India doubled in the same year to Rs500mn.
Mauritius had also discussed a deal with Pakistan covering trade in goods and services, investment, and economic and technical co-operation, the minutes said.
"It is expected that a Preferential Trade Agreement between the two countries would be signed in November 2006 in Islamabad," the minutes said.