For full details of this agreement, click on SACU – EFTA FTA (PDF) India`s High Commissioner for Namibia, Prashant Agrawal, said it makes sense to continue the enhanced trade relationship between India and Sacu, given the region`s potential to expand its access to the $2.9 trillion Asian tiger economy. Statistics showed that trade between India and South Africa also increased to more than $10 billion in the 2018-2019 fiscal year. India`s exports to South Africa included vehicles and components, medicines and pharmaceuticals, technical products, footwear, dyes and intermediates, as well as chemicals, textiles, rice, precious stones and jewellery, etc. India imported gold, steam coal, copper ores and concentrates, phosphoric acid, manganese ores, aluminum ingots and other minerals. The PTA is slightly different from the Free Trade Agreement (FTA). With regard to the free trade agreement, both parties reduce or eliminate tariffs to the maximum number of products with which they negotiate, while for PTAs, customs duties are eliminated or reduced in a number of articles. India and South Africa, the leading countries of SACU, are members of the BRICS group. We have the potential of the CBSA among the BRICS in the article of the BRICS Summit Declaration 2019 – Free Trade Agreements on the Horizon? and also noted that the BRICS account for 50% of total world trade by 2030. The Delhi-based Economic Times newspaper reported that there were two reasons for the decision to resume the PTA`s deliberations: historically close relations with southern Africa and its trade with Africa to the tune of $66.7 billion for the 2019/20 period. In 2001, SACU and the United States of America (United States) launched a process of concluding a free trade agreement between the two parties. However, due to divergent views on a number of issues, it was agreed in 2004 to suspend this process and consider an alternative approach to improve trade relations between the two sides. In February 2007, the two sides agreed on the conclusion of a Trade, Investment and Cooperation Agreement (TIDCA). This agreement will provide the framework for formal interaction between the two parties while providing a basis for the conclusion of separate agreements on technical issues.
So far, sanitary and phytosanitary (SPS) measures, technical barriers to trade (TBT), customs cooperation and trade promotion involving the private sector have been jointly identified. A text is expected to be adopted and signed before the end of 2008. According to Srikar Reddy, India`s Joint Secretary at the Ministry of Commerce, trade between India and Africa amounted to $66.7 billion in 2019-20, including $10.9 billion in India-SACU specific trade. SaCU concluded and signed a preferential trade agreement with MERCOSUR, signed by the Ministers of SACU and MERCOSUR at a ceremony in December 2004. The agreement contained an integrated programme for further negotiations on a number of issues, including rules of origin, SPS and specific requests for additional trade preferences for certain products on both sides. Steve Katjiuanjo, Executive Director of Namibia`s Ministry of Industrialization, Trade and SME Development, identified India as a strategic partner and found that the region benefits from access to India`s huge market. According to trade officials, India was fully committed and ready to support production and industry in Namibia in areas as diverse as agriculture, irrigation, renewable energy, ICT, pharmacy and medical care. Trade representatives from the Indian and South African Customs Union held online meetings to discuss a Preferential Trade Agreement (PTA). If implemented, it will reduce tariffs on a large number of products….