Lost your password?
Don't have an account? Sign Up

India-UK to hold further talks on FTA this week

Share This News Story:

NEW DELHI : India and the United Kingdom will resume talks for the proposed free trade agreement (FTA) this week when an official Indian delegation visits London.

“A team is going to the UK this week. There are very few pending issues left in the negotiation,” said Commerce Secretary Sunil Barthwal on Monday, while declining to identify the issues.

“A couple of key priority issues to seal the deal are being ironed out to have a balanced outcome,” said a commerce ministry presentation, adding that majority of difficult issues are towards resolution.

The talks will be part of the 14th round of negotiations between India and the UK, the first leg of which was started in March this year.

India and UK launched negotiations for a free trade agreement in January 2022 but the talks have gained momentum in recent months and were seen to be almost close to the finish line. However, with the General Elections in India, they are now in the slow lane but it is expected that a deal may be signed soon after the new government is elected.

Pending issues between the two countries include the UK’s ask for greater market access and lower tariffs for items such as whiskeys and automobiles. India is looking for more visas for its professionals and social security payments by Indian professionals working temporarily in the UK though they do not qualify for pensions in the country.

Meanwhile, India and the European Union are likely to start the eighth round of negotiations for the FTA, which is likely in May or June this year in Brussels. Both sides have decides to meet virtually to discuss some chapters before the commencement of the next round. The seventh round of talks between the two was held in February.

Share This News Story: