Trade surplus with Singapore declines, imports increase post-FTA

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New Delhi, Dec 14 (UNI) The Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement (CECA) between India and Singapore has led to a decline in the country's trade surplus with the latter to less than 600 million dollars, says an industry body study.

A study by industry body Ficci reveals that the surplus increased to over 1.3 billion dollar in 2004-05 before the FTA in goods was implemented.

In 2006-07, this surplus was narrowed to less than 600 million dollars and this in fact has turned into a deficit of over 300 million dollars in the first four months of current year.

This deficit is in contrast to a surplus of 600 million dollars in the same period of last year. At this rate, India might end up with a trade deficit of one billion dollars for the full year of 2007-08, observed the Chamber.

The study points out that out of the top-20 imports from Singapore in 2006-07, 14 items are from the category in which tariffs were eliminated from the day of implementation of FTA, while import duty on another two products will be abolished by 2009.

It also notes that the country's imports from Singapore rose on an average by 45 per cent per year, while the exports to Singapore grew by only half of that.

Substantial growth was witnessed in import of cellular phones which was recorded over 300 per cent, and personal computers (including laptops) jumped by more than 250 per cent.

The study also points out that the country's share in Singapore's global imports has increased from 1.05 per cent in 2004 before CECA to 2.04 per cent in 2006 post-CECA.

The findings further showed that Singapore's share in the country's total imports was close to three per cent, while its share in exports dropped to 4.8 per cent.

UNI

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