India grants tariff concessions to APTA members on 3,142 items

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New Delhi, July 2 (IANS) India has agreed to provide tariff concessions on 3,142 products to the six member nations of the Asia Pacific Trade Agreement (APTA) effective from July 1, an official statement said on Monday.

“India has, on its part, exchanged tariff concessions on 3142 tariff lines with all member countries and special concessions on 48 tariff lines for least developed countries (LDCs), with Bangladesh and Lao PDR,” a Commerce Ministry statement said.

APTA is an initiative under the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UN ESCAP) started in 1975 for trade expansion through exchange of tariff concessions among developing country members of the Asia-Pacific region.

It is a preferential trade agreement under which the basket of items, as well as extent of tariff concessions, are enlarged during the trade negotiating rounds launched from time to time.

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The Ministry also said these duty concessions will be on a differential basis with more applying for the LDCs and less for the developing countries.

“The LDC members are entitled to greater concessions on 1,249 items with an average margin of preference (MoP) of 81 on these items under the special and differential treatment provisions of the APTA,” it said.

“The coverage of preferences of total tariff lines for each member would come of 10,677 tariff lines (up from 4,270 items at the conclusion of the third round of negotiations) and deepen the average MoP being provided under the agreement to 31.52 per cent,” it added.

India is a founding member of APTA with the other five members being Bangladesh, China, Laos, South Korea and Sri Lanka.

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–IANS

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