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India, Thailand discuss bilateral trade agreement

Posted on Nov 19, 07:43PM | IANS

India and Thailand Monday discussed a host of issues, including counter-terrorism, maritime cooperation and also a bilateral Free Trade Agreement (FTA), which has seen "a lot of forward movement".

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Thailand Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra during a bilateral meeting held in the Cambodian capital stressed upon their considerable trade "which is growing, conclusion of a bilateral FTA, counter-terrorism, maritime cooperation, anti-piracy cooperation and cooperation to tackle natural disasters".

This was conveyed to journalists by Sanjay Singh, secretary (east) in the external affairs ministry, in a briefing.

India and Thailand have a bilateral trade of USD 7 billion in 82 items.

To a question on when the FTA would be concluded, Singh said the two countries have "early harvest schemes", and there has been a "lot of forward movement" in talks on the bilateral FTA and "we hope it concludes".

"There is no timeline for concluding it," he added.

The Thailand prime minister was the chief guest at India's Republic Day parade this year.

Shinawatra sought cooperation in science and technology, renewable energy and stressed the need to enhance people-to-people cooperation, and in tourism and culture, said Singh.

Thailand is a favourite destination with Indians, with around 800,000 to one million Indians visiting the country every year, said Singh.