India-Mauritius: Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement approved

The Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, has approved the signing of a comprehensive economic cooperation and partnership agreement (CECPA) between India and Mauritius. This approval was given on February 17, 2021.

Comprehensive Economic Cooperation agreement

  • It is a kind of a free trade agreement between India and Mauritius.
  • This agreement was signed with the aim of liberalising the norms to boost a two-way commerce.
  • This agreement will cover 310 export items for India such as foodstuff & beverages, textile & textile articles, base metals, agricultural products, electricals & electronic items, plastics & chemicals, wood & its articles.
  • Mauritius will also get preferential market access into India for some 615 products. These products would range from specialty sugar, biscuits, frozen fish, mineral water, fresh fruits, juices, beer, alcoholic drinks, medical & surgical equipment, soaps, bags and apparel.
  • This agreement is India’s first such trade agreement with any African nation.

Significance of the agreement

  • In the comprehensive economic cooperation agreement, the two trading countries cut or eliminate the duties on the products and liberalize the norms to promote the services trade.
  • Under the agreement, a mutually convenient date will be finalized in order to sign the agreement.
  • It will cover trade in goods, trade in services, rules of origin, sanitary & phytosanitary measures, Technical Barriers to Trade, dispute settlement, financial services, telecom, customs procedures and movement of natural persons.

India-Mauritius Trade Relation

India exports cereals, cotton, petroleum products, pharmaceuticals, electrical machinery, and clothing accessories to Mauritius currently. While, Mauritius export pearls, iron & steel, precious or semi-precious stones, optical instruments, photographic instruments and precision instruments. The bilateral trade between both the countries has reduced to USD 690 million in 2019-20. In the year 2018-19 the trade stood at USD 1.2 billion in 2018-19.

Mauritius

It is an island nation in the Indian Ocean with its capital at Port Louis. Its distance is about 2,000 kilometers off the southeast coast of African continent in the east of Madagascar. It comprises of the main island that is Mauritius, Agalega, Rodrigues, and St. Brandon. The islands of Mauritius and Rodrigues along with the Reunion island makes the part of Mascarene Islands.

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