Canada says committed to Free Trade Agreement with India
Toronto: Canada has said the negotiations for an ambitious Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement with India are progressing "very well" despite delay in early conclusion of bilateral foreign investment promotion and protection agreement. "The talks will see a meaningful closure with both sides having an agreement which is both ambitious as well as balanced", Canadian minister of international trade Ed Fast said on Friday.
He was addressing a meeting organized by the Indo-Canada Chamber of Commerce (ICCC) and the Brampton Board of Trade. To date, the Canada-India trade negotiations have undergone seven official rounds. A Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) would benefit Canadian workers and SMEs by eliminating or reducing tariffs on goods, cutting red tape and facilitating trade in services.
Canada has identified core economic opportunities in India in the energy, agriculture, infrastructure and education sectors, the minister said. "With SMEs accounting for more than 99 per cent of companies in Canada, our government understands the crucial role that these businesses play in generating jobs, growth and prosperity in every region of our country," Fast said.
"That's why we continue to work hard to open new markets for our exporters in the largest, most dynamic and fastest-growing economies in the world, including India," he added. "Further fuelling Canada's growing trade with India are our strong people-to-people ties," Bal Gosal, minister of sports, said.