India and Gulf Cooperation Council to resume FTA talks

Tags: International Relations Economics/Business

resume FTA talks

India's Industry and Trade Minister Piyush Goyal said on 24 November that India and the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) have agreed to resume talks on a free trade agreement.

Important facts

  • Both sides have agreed to expedite the necessary legal and technical requirements for the formal resumption of FTA negotiations.

  • The FTA will be a comprehensive economic partnership that will cover different aspects of trade. 

  • Goyal said the GCC is currently India's largest trading partner bloc with bilateral trade expected to exceed USD 154 billion in the financial year 2021-22.

  • bilateral trade in services between India and the GCC was worth 14 billion US dollars in the last financial year.

  • GCC countries contribute almost 35 per cent of the country's oil imports and 70 per cent of gas imports.

About Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) :

  • It is a political and economic alliance of six Middle Eastern countries—Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Bahrain, and Oman.

  • It was established in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, in May 1981. 

  • Its aim is to achieve coordination, cooperation and integration and Arab regional unity among these countries.

  • The GCC member states have a total GDP of over USD 3.464 trillion and a total population of 54 million.

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