India-Israel to resume negotiations on FTA

India and Israel have agreed to resume the negotiations on Free Trade Agreement (FTA) from November 2021.

Aim of FTA

  • Both the countries will negotiate on FTA with the aim of concluding long-pending deal by June 2022.
  • Discussions regarding FTA have been going on between India and Israel for more than a decade. However, for the first time a definite deadline has been set.

India-Israel Cooperation

  • India and Israel have joined the International Solar Alliance (ISA) which is a global initiative, started by India. Agreement was signed between Jaishankar and Israel’s Energy Minister Karine Elharrar.
  • Both the countries have helped each other during COVID-19 pandemic also.

India–Israel relations

The bilateral relations between India and Israel are extensive. Both the countries share military, economic and strategic relationship. Israel is represented by an embassy in New Delhi while consulates in Mumbai & Bangalore. India has set up its embassy in Tel Aviv.

Military Relations

India is the largest buyer of military equipment from Israel while Israel is the second-largest supplier of military equipment to India following Russia. In between 1999 to 2009, military business between both the countries was around US$9 billion. Military and strategic ties also extend to joint military training and intelligence-sharing on terrorist groups.

Economic Relations

India is the third-largest Asian trade partner of Israel, as of 2014. Overall, India is tenth-largest trade partner of Israel. The bilateral trade between both the countries stands at $4.52 billion, excluding the military sales. Both the countries are negotiating an extensive bilateral free-trade agreement which focuses on areas like biotechnology, information technology and agriculture.

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