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SAARC

South Asia Association for Regional Cooperation


SAARC countries signing bilateral, multilateral FTAs one after another
The South Asian economies including Bangladesh are becoming more and more regional trade-prone and they are going for bilateral free trade agreements (FTAs) alongside regional arrangements like South Asian Free Trade Area (SAFTA).
Bimstec free trade pact set to come into force in July
The BIMSTEC (Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation) free trade agreement is expected to come into force from July 1 this year, the Bangladesh Parliament was told Sunday.
South Asia: Burying quarrels for regional free trade
Will the seven countries of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) be able to sink some of their deep differences over political issues to enhance trade relations?
SAFTA comes into effect; Pak yet to ratify
South Asian Free Trade Area (SAFTA), paving way for free trade of goods among countries of the region, came into being on Sunday but Pakistan was yet to complete the formality of ratifying it.
Trade under Safta from Jan in doldrums
With three days left to meet the deadline, the trade under South Asia Free Trade Agreement (Safta) among the Saarc counties from January 1, next year is in doldrums as Sri Lanka says it will ratify Safta draft some time in April next year.
BIMSTEC countries to sign FTA early next year
BIMSTEC (Bangladesh-India-Myanmar-Sri Lanka-Thailand Economic Co-operation) Trade Ministers will sign a free-trade deal on goods at their Dhaka meet early next year.
Bilateral truths
When was the last time you heard Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh talk about the World Trade Organisation?
Getting SAARCastic
While the temptation exists to conclude as many FTAs as possible - in line with the global trend - India’s aspirations to become a global power will not amount to much unless it defends its exclusive zone of influence in South Asia against China.
SAARC committee of experts to meet on FTA issue
The Committee of Experts of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) have decided to meet for yet another round and forward the outstanding issues of South Asia Free Trade Area (SAFTA) to political level for final decision, a Nepali government official said Wednesday.
FTA to double Pakistan, Sri Lanka trade
With the start of free trade agreement between Pakistan and Sri Lanka, the annual trade volume between the two countries was likely to double within the first year due to the increase in trade in tea, textiles, betel leaves and other items.
Dhaka again rejects Delhi’s FTA proposal
Bangladesh has once again outright rejected an Indian proposal for signing Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with her, urging the counterpart to sign the proposed South Asia Free Trade Agreement (SAFTA) for boosting the regional trade and commerce.
FTA with neighbours
The Bangladesh Ministry of Commerce has decided to engage consultants to conduct a study and identify benefits and possible risks of signing bilateral trade agreements like Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with neighbouring countries.
Tariff rows may delay launch of SAFTA
Bangladesh, Pakistan and India continue to get locked in the niceties of negotiations on exchange of tariff concessions, particularly for competing products such as textiles at a time when less than six months are left for the agreement on South Asia Free Trade Area (Safta) of the seven-member South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (Saarc) to come into operation.
Bangladesh to vet free trade pacts
Bangladesh has decided to appoint an international trade consultant to vet trade proposals with South Asian countries to ensure they are beneficial for Dhaka.
Longing for modest gains from SAFTA
Much though economic integration is desirable, the SAARC nations will first have to create a politically harmonious subcontinent, and that is a formidable task. The ball is now in India’s court. It must take frantic efforts to wipe out elements of mistrust, shun big brotherly attitude and help restore confidence among its neighbours.
Vanaspati industry on brink of closure: IVPA
With India entering into Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with Sri Lanka and other SAARC countries, a number of vanaspati manufacturers have shifted their production base there to avail concessions, sounding a death-knell for the domestic industry by rendering it non-competitive.
Feeding on fears
We need to guard against attempts by vested interests to discourage South-South trade and to divide the economic unity of South Asia.
Pak-Sri Lanka FTA to bring two SAARC nations closer
Pakistan has signed its first Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with Sri Lanka.
Prosper-thy-neighbour in South Asia
The postponement of the Dhaka Summit of Saarc, twice over the past two months, is a setback for the fledgling process of economic integration in South Asia. But that should not prevent India from taking unilateral initiatives for promoting industry and supply capacities in its neighbours, especially Bangladesh.
No trade negotiation before Safta implementation - Bangladesh Commerce Secretary
The government will not move ahead with trade negotiations with any party before the South Asian Free Trade Area (Safta) gets implemented on January 1, 2006.