India and Canada set to hold bilateral trade talks starting today

India and Canada are set to hold talks during March 10-13 to further strengthen the bilateral ties and discuss economic partnership, including a free trade agreement between both nations.

Mary Ng, Minister of International Trade, Export Promotion, Small Business and Economic Development, Canada will be visiting New Delhi from Thursday to hold 5th India – Canada Ministerial Dialogue on Trade and Investment (MDTI).

The meeting will be co-chaired by Commerce and industry minister Piyush Goyal. Goyal had earlier said that India is likely to propose an interim trade deal with Canada, which will be followed by a full fledged trade deal.

“There has been a strong recovery in bilateral trade in 2021 after the fallout as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, with bilateral trade in goods reaching $6.29 billion registering a growth rate of 12 per cent as compared to the previous year,” an official statement said.

Total bilateral trade between the two countries, including goods and services crossed $11 billion. During April 2021-January 2022, Indian exports to Canada increased to $3 billion, up almost by a fourth as compared to a year ago period.

Major Indian exports to Canada include drugs and pharmaceutical products, iron & steel products, marine products, cotton fabrics & readymade garments (RMG) and chemicals etc, while key Canadian exports to India comprise pulses, fertilizers, coal and crude petroleum etc.India and Canada have been negotiating a comprehensive economic partnership agreement (CEPA) since 2010. The latest round of agreement happened in August, 2017.

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