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Shri Narendra Modi
Shri Narendra Modi
Prime Minister of India
International Trade
Asia Pacific Trade Agreement (APTA) (as of July, 2014)
Asia Pacific Trade Agreement (APTA) (as of July, 2014)
  • The Asia Pacific Trade Agreement (earlier known as Bangkok Agreement) is an initiative under the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) for trade expansion through exchange of tariff concessions among developing country members of the Asia Pacific Region. China acceded to the Agreement in 2000 and the current membership of APTA consists of Bangladesh, China, India, Lao PDR, Republic of Korea and Sri Lanka.
  • The Ministerial Council is the highest decision making body of APTA. The Standing Committee is the negotiating / implementing body which functions under the guidance and direction of the Ministerial Council. UN ESCAP functions as the Secretariat for the Agreement.
  • Till date, three Rounds of Trade Negotiations have taken place. Upto the Third Round, India has offered tariff preferences on 570 tariff lines at an average margin of preference (MoP) of 23.9% and an additional 48 tariff lines to LDC members at an average MoP of 39.7% at the 6-digit HS level.
  • The Second Session of the Ministerial Council, which was held in Goa in 2007, decided to launch the Fourth Round of Negotiations with the aim of both, widening and deepening the tariff concessions offered by Participating States on trade in goods and also on exploring the options to widen the scope of negotiations to other areas, such as non-tariff measures, services and investment.
  • In accordance with the mandate of the Ministerial Council, the Standing Committee initiated negotiations on the following areas:
    • Negotiations on tariff concessions on goods;
    • Negotiations on a Framework Agreement on Trade Facilitation;
    • Negotiations on a Framework Agreement on Trade in Services;
    • Negotiations on a Framework Agreement on Investments; and
    • Exploring possibilities on expanding the membership of APTA
  • Negotiations have concluded on the framework agreements on trade facilitation, investments and services. All the three agreements have since been signed and ratified by the Participating States.
  • The Third Session of the Ministerial Council was held in Seoul on 15 December 2009. The Indian delegation was led by Shri Jyotiraditya Madhavrao Scindia, the then Minister of State for Commerce and Industry.
  • Under the Fourth Round of negotiations, Participating States are still negotiating the average margin of preference (MoP) and coverage of tariff lines.
  • The 44th Session of the APTA Standing Committee was held on 24-25 July, 2014 at Bangkok, Thailand