Australian minister Andrew Robb returns India to advance trade talks

By: | Updated: April 21, 2015 12:01 PM

Andrew Robb will be visiting India this week to build further momentum towards the conclusion of an Australia-India Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement.

andrew robb, andrew robb mp, andrew robb India, andrew robb australia, Narendra Modi, Narendra Modi news, Tony Abott, India australia, india australia trade, india australia trade relationsAustralian Minister for Trade and Investment, Andrew Robb will be visiting India this week to build further momentum towards the conclusion of an Australia-India Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement (CECA). (Reuters)

Australian Minister for Trade and Investment, Andrew Robb will be visiting India this week to build further momentum towards the conclusion of an Australia-India Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement (CECA).

PM Narendra Modi and his Australian counterpart Tony Abbott have set a target of completing negotiations by the end of 2015. During the visit (21-24 April) Robb will meet with Indian government counterparts, senior business leaders, investors and policy experts in both New Delhi and Mumbai to advance this objective.

“My aim is to keep the momentum building as there is definitely an enthusiasm on both sides to conclude a quality agreement this year, it won’t be easy, but it certainly remains an achievable goal,” Robb said.

Robb’s visit follows a formal round of CECA negotiations in Canberra last week and Australia Business Week in India (ABWI) in January, which was Australia’s largest ever trade and investment promotion on the sub-continent.

“Services represent around 70 per cent of Australia’s economy, yet just 15 per cent of our exports. This is an export we are determined to grow and there are strong prospects with India across a wide range of services, given it is one of the world’s most rapidly growing services markets on account of a rising middle class,” he added.

Robb said there was also significant scope to grow the two-way investment relationship between India and Australia. “I am determined to ensure that both services and investment are given real prominence in the CECA negotiations, along with improved levels of market access for goods trade.”

India is Australia’s 12th largest trading partner with two-way trade worth approximately A$15 billion.

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