India to fast track free trade agreements with EU, Japan and Malaysia

India to fast track free trade agreements with EU, Japan and MalaysiaThere has been little or zero development in the Doha Round of World Trade Organization (WTO) multilateral trade talks for more than the previous one year, and India is proactively putting efforts to conclude the Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) with Japan, the European Union and Malaysia to increase its business booty.

After India’s initiatives to trigger off multilateral trade talks and re-energise the Doha Round failed last September, the Indian government has now re-designed its strategy and is now putting its focus on the bilateral pacts to increase its trade relations.

These additional efforts are likely to give that extra push to the FTA negotiations with the European Union, Japan and Malaysia and gradually everything is anticipated to fall into place within a year. Efforts are being made to make the conclusion as fast as possible.

India had signed the trade in goods agreement with the Association of South-East Asian Nations (ASEAN) last year which became operational from 1st January this year.

However, only four of the ten countries that comprise ASEAN— Vietnam, Singapore, Thailand and Malaysia — have got the agreement functional so far. It is hoped that the remaining six will catch up with the pact soon.