labels: economy - general, shipping
Cabinet clears India-Brazil-South Africa maritime pactnews
08 September 2006

Mumbai: The union cabinet has approved an India-Brazil-South Africa (IBSA) trilateral agreement on merchant shipping and other maritime related matters. The cabinet nod comes ahead of the India-Brazil-South Africa summit at the Brazilian capital Brasilia beginning September 10.

Leaders of the three countries will sign the agreement during the first IBSA summit on September 13. Prime minister Manmohan Singh will attend the summit at the Brazilian capital Brasilia.

"Promoting direct links between the three countries is important from India''s point of view. The proposed agreement is an important component of this," government spokesperson said after a cabinet meeting presided over by the prime minister. "It will further strengthen the relations and cooperation between the three countries," she added.

The agreement is expected to be a positive step in improving the shipping links and would further strengthen the relations and cooperation among the three countries.

Manmohan is expected to land in Brasilia on Monday after an overnight halt at Frankfurt. He will be heading a high-level delegation that will include commerce and industry minister Kamal Nath, minister of state for external affairs Anand Sharma, foreign secretary-designate Shiv Shankar Menon, national security adviser M.K. Narayanan and other officials.

The prime minister''s two-day visit will be split into two - a purely bilateral one on the first day, during which at least six official agreements and an equal number of commercial deals would be signed.

The second day would see the first summit of IBSA - the India-Brazil-South Africa initiative that was launched three years ago as a forum for South-South cooperation. The initiative aims at promoting multilateral ties in the political, economic and cultural spheres.

A large business delegation comprising top company honchos from three major chambers - CII, FICCI and Assocham - would also be going to Brazil and would have separate meetings on the sidelines.

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Cabinet clears India-Brazil-South Africa maritime pact