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ASEAN, India Seal Additional Free Trade Pact

by Mary Swire, Tax-News.com, Hong Kong

27 December 2012


India and the ten-nation membership of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) have recently concluded a free trade agreement to include trade in services and investments, to add to their exiting FTA on trade in goods.

An agreement was reached ahead of a two-day summit to mark 20 years of dialogue between India and the ASEAN trade bloc. It is anticipated that all the nations will have completed their necessary legislative procedures by the first quarter of 2013 allowing for the agreement to be formally signed in August 2013.

Talks to expand the scope of the existing agreement began in the second quarter of 2010, and it was initially hoped that the nations would conclude these negotiations by the end of that year. Notably, the agreement will liberalize conditions for individuals undertaking foreign contracts, and will be particularly beneficial for Indian and the Philippines given their sizable outsourcing industries.

The new agreement builds upon the existing free trade pact, which under a phased approach will eliminate tariffs on 80% of goods by December 31, 2016.

TAGS: individuals | tax | investment | business | Brunei | India | export duty | fiscal policy | law | tariffs | Laos | Philippines | Singapore | Thailand | excise duty | Cambodia | Indonesia | Malaysia | import duty | trade | Vietnam | services

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