The Joint Study Group recommends that the Australian and Indian authorities consider a comprehensive bilateral free trade agreement that includes trade in goods, services, investment facilitation and other cooperation activities within a single enterprise. According to the DFAT and statements by new Trade Minister Steve Ciobo, bilateral talks between Australia and India remain a top priority and are close to being concluded. The aim was for negotiations to be completed at the beginning of this year and for legislation and ratification to take place before the end of 2016. Trade Minister Steve Ciobo recently called a pause and review of the bilateral trade agreement the government is negotiating with India. Trade between India and Australia has grown strongly over the past decade, but it is heavily skewed in Australia`s favour. In 2018-19, Indian imports from the island state were estimated at $13.3 billion, while Australian imports from India were only $3.52 billion, resulting in a trade deficit of nearly $10 billion. „If Australia takes a flexible approach to the dairy sector and agriculture and is willing to take into account some of our interests in the services sector, including simpler visa rules for workers, a free trade pact can certainly be developed,“ the official said. Moreover, a deep distrust of trade is an intrinsic feature of the nationalism championed by the BJP. The party`s ideological source, the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), sees trade liberalization as a threat to Indian identity, and its economic understanding remains linked to Swadeshi`s idea of self-sufficiency through priority domestic products, made entirely from Indian production lines.
The organization`s economic wing recently staged a 10-day protest against India`s participation in the Regional Economic Partnership (RCEP), a free trade framework being negotiated between the 10 ASEAN countries and Australia, China, India, Japan, South Korea and New Zealand. India`s concerns remain an obstacle for all concerned countries to reach an agreement (talks are expected to resume on 1 November). List of negotiated agreements. Agreements that, until now, are only discussed without the formal action of the parties concerned, are not mentioned. After eight years of negotiations, Canberra and New Delhi have not been able to settle the details of a free trade agreement. The Joint Government of Australia-India Study Group has completed its feasibility study on the possible free trade agreement between the two countries. 28 July 2020: Following a recent meeting chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and an assessment of the results of all Indian free trade agreements by the Ministries of Trade and Industry and Finance, the Indian government has set up four working groups to develop a new trade strategy to promote foreign investment, and EFTA has concluded bilateral agreements with the following countries, including dependent areas, and blocs: It has been more than eight years since Australia and India opened negotiations for a free trade agreement known as the Australia-India Economic Cooperation Agreement. . . .