Indian Commerce Ministry to study benefits of bilateral pacts with other nations

16:38, April 22, 2011      

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The Indian Commerce Ministry will soon launch a study to assess the trade benefits from several bilateral agreements that the country has entered into, local media reported Friday.

The move comes after the economic survey in February pointed out that some of the Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) could result in "much more" benefits to partner countries and the gains for India would be "small or negative," The Indian Express newspaper quoted unnamed official sources as saying.

Local economic survey has warned that the government should ensure FTAs don't mushroom, while at the same time policy challenge related to the bilateral agreements must take note of specific concerns of the domestic sector.

The ministry of commerce has finally decided to take up the study of impact of FTAs on several points, including "the trade diversion created by the arrangement, the creation of trade that has taken place after the agreement, the effect on services in which India has an edge over the other nations," the sources were quoted as saying.

They added that the study will also entail the impact of the FTAs on the investment growth in the country.

"We will see if the flow of investment has enhanced after the opening up and lowering of tariffs. Whether cross-border interaction is actually taking place," the sources were quoted as saying.

Source: Xinhua
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