India, Canada to discuss FTA during Kamal Nath’s visit

Press Trust of India | 4 May 2008

India, Canada to discuss FTA during Kamal Nath’s visit

Ottawa, May 4 (PTI) — India will hold discussion on Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with Canada during Union Commerce Minister Kamal Nath’s visit to that country next month.

Indian High Commissioner to Canada R L Narayan announced this, saying that "this would be first high level discussion on this issue." He said that both countries had already concluded foreign investment protection and promotion agreement last summer.

An expert committee of Canadian Council of Chief Executive Officers and CII, set up last year to evolve strategies to strengthen bilateral relations including free trade agreement, would soon finalise its report, he said.

Narayan, praising new reforms in Canada’s immigration policy, said it will "strengthen bilateral relations as Canada was seeking a bigger share of India’s booming economy and human capital, including doctors and other skilled labourers." Under sweeping changes being planned, Narayan said it would be easier for students from India and elsewhere who wish to remain in the country after graduation.

He said that the relationship between the two countries is "a perfect fit. Our bi-lateral fundamentals are very strong on both sides." India needs Canada’s expertise in automobiles and cutting edge communications technology, Narayan said, adding "we’re adding five to eight million mobile phones every month." Highlighting booming mobile phone industry in India, Narayan said: "India needs Canada’s expertise in cutting edge communications technology and automobiles."

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source: PTI