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FTA talks: Canada in Mar; GCC seeks pact

“Now all the GCC countries have approached us to start negotiations on behalf of the entire GCC grouping,” Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal said, speaking at the annual convention of industry body FICCI.

By: ENS Economic Bureau | New Delhi |
December 18, 2021 4:13:11 am
Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal

Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal said Friday India was likely to enter negotiations for a free trade agreement (FTA) with Canada in March or April 2022, and that members of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) had as a group approached India to begin free trade negotiations. FTA talks are ongoing with the UAE, Australia, EU and Israel, and are set to start with the UK next month.

“Now all the GCC countries have approached us to start negotiations on behalf of the entire GCC grouping,” Goyal said, speaking at the annual convention of industry body FICCI. The GCC comprises Saudi Arabia, UAE, Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman and Qatar. India is likely to announce a separate early harvest FTA with the UAE for reduction of tariffs on certain goods within the next month.

Goyal also said India was exploring if an “India Mart” could be set up in Dubai to boost the profile of Indian products in African and Middle Eastern nations.

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