India, which last week concluded trade and investment pacts with Japan and Malaysia, is now set to start the process of negotiating similar trade and investment agreements with Indonesia and Thailand.
India, this week, signed a comprehensive economic cooperation agreement with Japan and announced the successful conclusion of a similar agreement with Malaysia.
India will be seeking similar Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement (CECAs) - free trade agreements covering not only goods, but also services and investment, with the other two Southeast Asian countries, official sources said today.
According to sources, commerce and industry minister Anand Sharma and his Indonesian counterpart have exchanged letters agreeing to set the process in motion.
The decision to extend an invitation to Indonesian president Susilo Yudhoyono as next year's Republic Day guest is related to this larger goal, sources said.
The CECAs allow India to advance its agenda on services and investment, beyond the traditional free trade agreement's focus on goods trade.