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India-European FTA talks this month

Sentinel Digital DeskBy : Sentinel Digital Desk

  |  2 Sep 2017 12:00 AM GMT

New Delhi, Sept 1: India and the European Free Trade Association (EFTA) will meet this month in an attempt to conclude their long pending negotiations, Commerce Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said here on Friday. “Together with the EFTA countries (Switzerland, Norway, Iceland, Liechtenstein), we want to go ahead with the FTA,” Sitharaman said at a business session with Swiss President Doris Leuthard organised by industry chambers Ficci, CII and Assocham. “We’ll meet in September and want it (FTA) concluded for the benefit of both,” she said. She also said that India would look into “every concern” of foreign investors on intellectual property rights (IPR) and investment protection. “Investment protection is being negotiated,” the minister said. So far, 16 rounds of negotiations have taken place, talks for which started in 2008. The two sides resumed talks on the agreement here in January after a gap of three years The proposed agreement covers trade in goods and services, investments, trade facilitation, customs cooperation, IRPR protection and public procurement. “For India to benefit, she has to compete with other Asian countries with whom we are also negotiating. You can compete only by further opening up your economy. (IANS)

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