India And Canada Anticipate That An Interim Trade Agreement Will Be Completed Soon
Recent pro-Khalistan protests in Canada have had no impact on India and Canada’s trade negotiations, and both countries are aiming for a quick conclusion of the interim trade agreement. The temporary trade agreement may be inked by the end of the year, according to sources.
This comes after the CEPA (Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement) talks between India and Canada were formally restarted in 2022. Additionally, there have long been discussions of an early progress trade agreement or interim trade deal.
Trade negotiations between India and the UK have also proceeded despite pro-Khalistan demonstrations that took place in London earlier this year. Khalistan, according to experts, will have an impact on bilateral relations, but it is unclear whether this would also have an impact on trade negotiations.
According to Surendar Singh, an associate professor at the FORE School of Management, it is difficult to predict how the Khalistan issue will affect trade discussions. “Every nation strives to safeguard its strategic interests and sovereign rights. But not all Sikhs in Canada are in favor of Khalistan. Even Khalistan’s support base in Punjab is now very thin, he noted.
Singh added that a temporary trade pact with Canada along the lines of the temporary pact with India and Australia would be very beneficial. The CEPA, which would be crucial for both nations, would be the second phase of the free trade agreement. He said that it was “difficult to say whether the three FTAs of India—with Canada, the UK, and European countries—will be concluded by the end of the year” because of the impending elections.
The amount of trade between the two nations has increased. The bilateral commerce in products between Canada and India increased by 57% annually to $12 billion in 2022, while the bilateral trade in services was C$8.9 billion at the same time.