Finalisation of Annexes to the PTA between Mercosur and India

for Cabinet Committee Decisions | Date - 16-03-2005

The Union Cabinet today gave its approval for signing of five Annexes of the Preferential Trade Agreement (PTA) between with MERCOSUR and India. It will facilitate the ongoing endeavour to strengthen trade and economic relations between MERCOSUR and India. The signing of the annexes to the PTA with MERCOSUR will pave the way to implement the Preferential Trade Agreement as the first step towards negotiating ultimately a Free Trade Agreement. This will boost our trade to MERCOSUR in particular and Latin America in general.

The Minister of Commerce & Industry has been authorized to sign these Annexes on March 19, 2005 upon the conclusion of the G-20 meeting in New Delhi. G-20 is a grouping of developing countries on agriculture issues in the WTO.

MERCOSUR is a trading block in Latin America comprising Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay and Paraguay. It has Chile and Bolivia as its associate members. MERCOSUR was formed in 1991 with the objective of facilitating the free movement of goods, services, capital and people among the four member countries. It became a Customs Union in 1995. MERCOSUR has become a successful market of about 200 million people, representing about $One trillion of GDP and $190 billion of trade. It is the fourth largest integrated market after the European Union (EU), North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and ASEAN.

India had a total trade of US $ 1416.65 million with MERCOSUR during 2003-2004. Indian exports to MERCOSUR were approximately US$ 566.96 million during 2003-04 and imports from MERCOSUR were around US $ 849.69 million during the same period. The region still has a huge potential for Indian exports as Indian share is just 0.83 per cent of the global imports of MERCOSUR. Indian major items of exports to MERCOSUR are drugs, pharmaceuticals and finc chemicals, transport equipment, inorganic/ organic / agro chemicals, cotton yarn and cotton and manmade fabrics, made-ups, readymade garments, dyes, intermediates and coal tar. The major imports into India from MERCOSUR are edible oils (primarily soya), metalliferous ores, metal scrap and non-electrical machinery.

(Release ID :7865)

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