India-International Relations Current Affairs

India, Singapore sign second protocol amending CECA

India and Singapore have signed Second Protocol amending Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement (CECA) in New Delhi. Its provisions will come into effect on 14th September, 2018.

Second Protocol amending CECA

It will help to boost bilateral trade between India and Singapore. It formally brings to closure negotiations on second review of CECA. It will give effect to provisions agreed between India and Singapore during closure of second review of CECA. It will give effect to provisions agreed between India and Singapore during closure of the second review of CECA.

Background

CECA was first comprehensive agreement covering trade in goods, services and investments signed by India with any of its trading partners. It was signed in June, 2005 and its first review was concluded in October, 2007. The second review was started in May 2010. In closing second review, India and Singapore had successfully reached mutual understanding and agreement. They also had agreed to expand coverage of tariff concessions, liberalize Rules of Origin, rationalize Product Specific Rules and include provisions on Certificate of Origin and Cooperation on its verification. These measures will further facilitate trade between India and Singapore and also improve utilization of CECA. The conclusion of second review was announced during state visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to Singapore in June, 2018. Now, both countries are exploring the possibility of launching the 3rd Review of India-Singapore CECA in September, 2018.

India-Singapore Trade

Singapore is second largest trading partner of India within ASEAN and India is largest trading partner of Singapore in South Asia with bilateral trade of US $17.7 billion in 2017-18. Singapore’s trade with India constitutes about 21.8% of our total trade with ASEAN and 2.3% of our global trade.  India had trade surplus of US $2.73 billion with Singapore in 2017-18.

Month: Categories: India Current Affairs 2018

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India to host inaugural 2+2 Dialogue with US in September 2018

India is going to host inaugural 2+2 Dialogue with United States in September 2018 in New Delhi. In the inaugural meeting, Minister of External Affairs (MEA) Sushma Swaraj and Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman will host US Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo and US Secretary of Defence James Mattis.

Key Facts

The inaugural meeting will cover broad range of bilateral, regional and global issues of shared interest, with a view to strengthening strategic and security ties between the two countries. Both nations will discuss strengthening of strategic, security and defence cooperation as both nations have committed to jointly address challenges in Indo-Pacific region and beyond. The dialogue is seen as vehicle to elevate strategic relationship between the two countries.

Note: The inaugural 2+2 dialogue was scheduled to be held in July 2018, but was postponed at last moment by US citing “unavoidable reasons”. It was third time that 2+2 dialogue was postponed in the last six months.

2+2 Dialogue

2+2 Dialogue between India and US was agreed during visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to US in June, 2017. It is similar to India-Japan 2+2 dialogue format between foreign and defence secretaries and ministers of the two countries. It replaces earlier India-US Strategic and Commercial Dialogue.

The dialogue s aimed enhancing strategic coordination between both countries and maintaining peace and stability in Indo-Pacific region. It puts strategic, defence and security relationship between two countries at forefront and centre stage.

It insulates India-US strategic relationship from feuds over trade issues and deep divide on economic integration policies as trade and commercial issues that collided with strategic relationship between both countries’ discussed in Strategic and Commercial Dialogue earlier.

Month: Categories: International Current Affairs 2018

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