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Jakarta Post

ASEAN-India FTA signed in Bangkok

  • Sri Wahyuni

    The Jakarta Post

Bangkok   /   Fri, August 14 2009   /  02:10 pm

ASEAN and India finally signed the long-awaited free trade agreement (FTA) Thursday in Bangkok, ending more than six years of intensive negotiations. Signed at the 7th ASEAN Economic Ministers (AEM)-India meeting, held in conjunction with the 41st AEM meeting from August 13 to 16, the agreement is set to take effect starting Jan. 1, 2010. "This is another ASEAN achievement, linking the group with India, a market of 1.2 billion people whose economy is comparable to that of China, Japan and South Korea, countries with whom ASEAN has signed free trade agreements," Porntiva Nakasai, chairwoman of the AEM-India meeting, said. She expressed confidence the agreement would be an important mechanism for ASEAN member countries to strengthen and expand trade and investment with India amid the global economic downturn. "Trade between ASEAN and India is expected to increase to US$...