India, Peru To Start FTA Negotiations This Week

India and South American nation Peru would start formal negotiations for a proposed free trade agreement (FTA) from this week, a senior official said today.

The FTA aims at liberalising norms for trade in goods and services with a view to further boost bilateral economic ties between the countries.

“This will be the first round of negotiations,” the official said.

The two-day deliberations would focus on contours of negotiations and decide on structure of different working groups such as goods, services and investments.

Approval for the talks was given by the Union Cabinet earlier this year.

A joint study group, constituted by both the sides had agreed to carry forward the discussions on the proposed agreement.

In an FTA, two countries significantly reduce or eliminate duties on most of the goods traded between them besides relaxing norms and rules to promote trade in services and increase bilateral investments.

Peru ranked third among export destinations for India in the Latin America and Caribbean (LAC) region during 2015-16.

The bilateral trade between the nations increased to USD 1.8 billion in 2016-17 from USD 1.52 billion in 2015-16.

Latin America is one of the important markets for Indian exporters.

India has recently expanded preferential trade agreement with Chile.

Chile is the fourth largest trading partner of India in LAC region after Brazil, Venezuela and Argentina.

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