Protocol yet to be inked before formal trade talks can start between India and Ecuador

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Published: July 23, 2019 12:50:32 PM

A joint study with both India and Ecuador for a trade agreement which would help boost commercial and investment opportunities was initiated by the Indian side, which was in line with government’s plan to expand its footprint in the region.

Since the region holds great potential for exports and investments, the FTA between the two countries will reduce and/or eliminate customs duties on certain items traded which have already been. (Representational Image/ Reuters File photo)Since the region holds great potential for exports and investments, the FTA between the two countries will reduce and/or eliminate customs duties on certain items traded which have already been. (Representational Image/ Reuters File photo)

The first round of negotiations between India and South American nation Ecuador on the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) is yet to start as the two sides have not yet signed a protocol for starting the negotiations. Top officials confirmed that “the two sides have yet to sign a protocol for the for FTA talks to start.” Since the region holds great potential for exports and investments, the FTA between the two countries will reduce and/or eliminate customs duties on certain items traded which have already been.

Financial Express Online was the first to report that the feasibility study for the proposed India-Ecuador FTA has long been completed and shared with the government of Ecuador. Once the protocol is inked then a formal date and place will be set. In the meantime, the investment promotion agencies of both sides are trying to promote the exchange of information on investment and business opportunities available and the incentives that the governments are offering.

A joint study with both India and Ecuador for a trade agreement which would help boost commercial and investment opportunities was initiated by the Indian side, which was in line with government’s plan to expand its footprint in the region. In 2015, a protocol was signed by both sides under which the India-Ecuador Joint Economic and Trade Committee (JETCO) was set up for further deepening and strengthening the trade relationship. The South American nation has reached out to India, seeking cooperation to set up a Centre for Excellence in Agriculture.

The government of Ecuador has great incentives for foreign investors and has also offered preferentially commercial access to different markets. And has recently started the export of the long-lasting roses to India and also environment-friendly products for the Indian fashion industry.

The fashion industry in India is already importing Tagua – Corozo or Ivory Nut, from the Ecuadorian tropical rainforest, and transforming them into buttons.

The South American nation boasts of extended production diversity, besides a great potential in agri-business, fishery, aquaculture, forestry, mining, tourism. Besides opportunities available in the oil sector for Indian companies, they can also explore pharmaceuticals, gold, and silver sector.

Also, agricultural products including canned tuna fish, shrimps, prawns, and sardines, broccoli and asparagus are some products that can be imported from that country.

Both the sides also agreed to deepen the cooperation between their respective investment promotion agencies to promote a greater exchange of information on investment and business opportunities in both countries.

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