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India and ASEAN activate joint committee to review free trade pact

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NEW DELHI : Trade ministers of India and 10-nation bloc ASEAN have endorsed the scope of review of the trade pact to make the agreement more industry friendly, the Commerce ministry said on Friday. The issue was discussed during the 19th ASEAN-India Economic Ministers’ meeting in Siem Reap City, Cambodia.

The review would make the agreement modern with contemporary trade facilitative practices, and streamlined customs and regulatory procedures.

“The ministers endorsed the scope of the review of the ASEAN-India trade in goods agreement to make it more user-friendly, simple, and trade facilitative for businesses, as well as responsive to the current global and regional challenges including supply chain disruptions,’ it said.

The ministers also activated a joint committee to undertake the review of the agreement expeditiously. The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN)-India trade in goods agreement was signed on August 13, 2009 and came into force on January 1, 2010. Ten ASEAN countries are — Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.

Minister of State for Commerce and Industry Smt Anupriya Patel along with Pan Sorasak, Minister of Commerce, Cambodia, co-chaired the meeting.

The two-way trade has reached USD 91.5 billion in 2021, 39.2 per cent up from 2020.

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