Association of South East Asian Nations ASEAN has agreed to India’s long
pending demand to review the free trade agreement forged about ten years ago
between the two sides.
has always contended that the agreement had not benefitted the country and the
trade gap between the two sides has been increasing by the year. The trade gap
during the last financial year was 22 billion US Dollars against 13 billion US
Dollars during the previous year.
joint statement issued after the meeting between the two sides said “they have
agreed to more user friendly simple and trade facilitation for business”
decision was taken at the end of economic ministers of the ten nation grouping
and the commerce minister Piyush Goyal at the 16th ASEAN Economic
ministers-India consultations held at Thai capital Bangkok a few days ago.
will be the first review that will be undertaken on the ten year old pact which
came into force way back in 2010.
Two sides to constitute a joint
committee to conduct the review
The two sides also agreed to constitute a joint
committee to conduct the review. Mr Goyal asked the officials to work out the
details of the review and submit an update on the next ministerial meeting.