UK team visit may speed up FTA talks for India
UK Secretary of State for Business and Trade Kemi Badenoch and Director General for Trade Negotiations at the Department for Business and Trade (DBT) Amanda Brooks are visiting India this week
New Delhi Issues pertaining to the proposed bilateral investment treaty being negotiated between India and the UK along with a free trade agreement will figure prominently during the visit of a high-level team from Britain here, an official said.
UK Secretary of State for Business and Trade Kemi Badenoch and Director General for Trade Negotiations at the Department for Business and Trade (DBT) Amanda Brooks are visiting India this week. Besides participating in the G20 Trade and Investment Ministerial Meeting in Jaipur on August 24-25, the UK minister will hold bilateral talks with Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal on August 26 here and review the progress of talks on the free trade agreement. The UK minister is also expected to meet Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on various issues, including the bilateral investment treaty.
Brooks would also meet senior officials of the department of economic affairs in the finance ministry, which is leading the negotiations on the investment treaty. These meetings assume significance as negotiations for the free trade agreement have reached a final stage. Investment treaty is being negotiated as a separate agreement between India and the UK and the two countries are looking at signing both the agreements simultaneously. Though talks for most of the chapters have been closed, both sides have intensified negotiations to iron out differences on issues including rules of origin, intellectual property rights and the investment pact. Sources said that at present the investment treaty is a hurdle in the conclusion of both the agreements simultaneously, however, negotiations are going on to bridge the differences. These investment treaties help in promoting and protecting investments in each other's countries.