FTA between India-UK


The proposed Free Trade Agreement (FTA) negotiations between India and the UK are nearing completion, and discussions on 19 of the total 26 chapters have been concluded

19 of the 26 chapters or policy areas that India and the UK are negotiating to conclude an FTA have been closed to further discussion.

Both nations were able to come to wide agreement in the recently ended 11th round of negotiations on issues relating to vehicles, whisky, and market access.

The India-UK Free Trade Agreement negotiations are anticipated to be finished well before the year's conclusion.

After the political and economic difficulties in the UK, the FTA negotiations between the two nations slowed considerably.

India's main priority is to establish a complete agreement without giving up too much, since it will serve as a model for all future trade agreements.

With the EU (European Union) and EFTA (European Free Trade Association) nations, including Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, and Switzerland, FTAs are being negotiated.

India – UK Economic Relations

Between the UK and India, total commerce in goods and services (imports plus exports) totalled USD 32.7 billion from April 2021 to March 2022.

Total exports from India to the UK were worth 21.5 billion USD, while imports from the UK were worth 10.2 billion USD.

India and the UK have a surplus of trade.

The seventh-largest export market for India is the UK.

Challenges in India – UK Free Trade Agreement:

Challenges in India – UK Free Trade Agreement:

The UK desires that India open up its fiercely guarded markets for telecommunications, finance, and legal services.

India is still uneasy, though, because of domestic opposition.

Due to the fact that both nations are major exporters of services, a treaty without significant services liberalization may be a shallow FTA.

Because the exports of both nations' services are so complementary, the adverse effects of liberalization on domestic companies would be lessened.

India wants the UK to simplify business processes and offer professional temporary visas.

On top of this, more immigration regulations could be loosened with an emphasis on the IT and healthcare industries.

The lack of GDPR-like protection in India is a big concern for UK businesses who may operate in India under the FTA.

The Digital Personal Data Protection Bill 2023, which is currently before the Indian parliament, ought to be put into effect in India. The Bill was recently passed by the Lok Sabha.

The improvement of data protection and compliance with UK business requirements will both be advanced by this action.

The FTA's chapter on intellectual property rights (IPR), which was leaked, urges for the harmonisation of intellectual property (IP) rules, particularly those in the UK and India regarding patents.

The availability of inexpensive and life-saving generic medications in India may be impacted by these rather severe rules.

In both nations, agriculture is a sensitive industry.

An FTA might increase India's agricultural export share from its current low of 1.1% in the UK's import basket of goods like rice, marine products, spices, and beef. The UK is a net importer of agricultural products.

India should reevaluate its concerns about permitting the import of British food, especially in light of the country's growing middle class and its willingness to spend on higher-valued agri-based food items.

India might create a structural fund such as those of the EU to compensate farmers for losses brought on by a rise in British imports, and the UK could provide aid-for-trade.

Posted by on 7th Aug 2023