India, Malaysia sign CECA to promote foreign investments

Kuala Lumpur, Feb 18 (ANI): Commerce and Industry Minister Anand Sharma and his Malaysian counterpart Mustapa Mohamed today signed the India-Malaysia Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement (CECA) to promote foreign investments at Putrajaya in Kuala Lumpur.

The agreement will come into effect on July 1, 2011 and the first review will be held within a year of coming into force

The India-Malaysia CECA is a comprehensive and ambitious agreement that envisages liberal trade in goods and services and a stable and competitive investment regime to promote foreign investment between the two countries.

The goods package under the CECA takes the tariff liberalization beyond the India-ASEAN FTA commitments on items of mutual interest for both the countries.

Under the agreement, India will get market access in the Malaysian market for goods including fruits such as mangoes, banana and guava, basmati rice, two wheelers and cotton garments.

At the same time, protection continues to be provided for the sensitive sectors. Under the services agreement, India and Malaysia have provided commercially meaningful commitments in sectors and modes of interest to each other which should result in enhanced services trade.

Sectors such as accounting and auditing, architecture, urban planning, engineering services, medical and dental, IT and ITES, Management Consulting Services would get Malaysian market access.

Malaysia has offered comparatively higher level of FDI in key sectors of interest to India such as construction services (51 per cent), computer and related services (100 per cent), management and consultancy services (100 per cent).

Earlier, Sharma called on Malaysian Prime Minister Mohd Najib Tun Razak and discussed the steady growth in the bilateral economic engagement and the excellent relations between the two countries.

Sharma hoped that the bilateral trade target of 15 billion dollars by 2015 set during the visit of Indian Prime Minister to Malaysia in October 2010 should be achievable with the signing of the bilateral CECA.

During his meeting with Mustapa Mohamed, Sharma discussed wide range of bilateral and regional matters including DMIC, the progress under the India-ASEAN Services and Investment Agreement negotiations and the Comprehensive Economic Partnership in East Asia (CEPEA). (ANI)

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