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Widening of FTA: India, Sri Lanka officials to meet this month

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 

Senior officials of and will meet this month in the island nation to discuss broadening of the existing trade deal by including services and investments.

The officials are expected to meet by the middle of this month in Sri Lanka, an official said.

and have a agreement (FTA) only in goods. It was implemented in March 2000.

In October, Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe had said that the FTA will be broadened further beyond goods to cover services, investments and technology cooperation.

already has a healthy trade surplus in goods with due to the existing agreement. India exported goods worth USD 5.30 billion in 2015-16 and its from that country were worth only USD 0.75 billion.

Sri Lanka is India's major trading partner in South Asia.

In 2003, both sides set up a joint study group to widen the ambit of the FTA. Based on its recommendations, they started negotiations for a Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement in February 2005.

The negotiations however have not progressed much as Sri Lanka's services sector has voiced apprehensions over the perceived advantages of the pact for India.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Thu, December 01 2016. 15:07 IST