labels: economy - general, trade
India, Japan to start free trade talks next weeknews
27 January 2007

Mumbai: Japan and India will commence talks on a comprehensive free trade deal next week. Bilateral trade between Japan and India in 2005 was approximately $6.2 billion; trade between Japan and Chin in comparison was $173.4 billion in the same year.

A Japanese delegation will visit New Delhi on 31 January for a three-day initial meeting on how to proceed with the negotiations.

According to Japanese foreign ministry official Satoshi Isono the two countries will work towards lowering the tariffs on the trade of goods between the two countries to increase bilateral trade.

He said Japan would do its best to make the talks successful "as India is a huge frontier for Japanese business."

The talks follow an agreement in Tokyo in December between prime minister Dr Manmohan Singh and his Japanese counterpart Shinzo Abe to conclude free-trade talks within two years.

Abe has attached a top priority to forging closer ties with India to compensate for frequent tensions with China.

Among its priorities, Japan wants India to lower its 100 per cent tariffs on vehicle imports and establish common rules on investment and services.

India, in turn, has expressed interest in Japan deregulating customs inspections, cutting tariffs on shrimp imports and loosening visa rules for Indian medical care workers and engineers.



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India, Japan to start free trade talks next week