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Trade pact with Bangladesh makes headway, high on India's radar, says Indian High Commissioner in Dhaka

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Vikram Doraiswami, Indian High Commissioner to Bangladesh (Photo-Twitter)

As India and Bangladesh continue to move fast with talks on the proposed Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA), Indian High Commissioner to Bangladesh Vikram Doraiswami in an interview with Dhaka Tribune said that the pact would be a "win-win" for both countries.

Sources told India Narrative that the two countries have made “considerable progress” and the deal will be signed soon.

“I can say with confidence that the CEPA with Bangladesh is among the few FTAs that our commerce ministry is prioritizing, in terms of its allocation of manpower for negotiation,” Doraiswami said in the interview.

Also read: Bangladesh to aggressively look for trade deals to push exports

“There is recognition of the fact, in both countries, that better connectivity, growing prosperity and a less politicized approach to trade and investment creates enormous head-room for growth in trade, investment flows and integrated production chains," Doraiswami added.

Meanwhile, both Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Bangladeshi counterpart Sheikh Hasina have underlined the need to boost connectivity, trade and people to people contact.

The issue of border trade, which involves the local communities of both sides is also slated to get a big push.

Bangladesh, expected to graduate from the least developed countries (LDC) category by 2026, has already stepped-up efforts to protect its exports market by re-drawing its trade strategy especially with neighbouring countries including China and Sri Lanka.

Instead of going in for long drawn multilateral trade negotiations, the Sheikh Hasina government is aggressively looking for bilateral agreements, which are relatively less time consuming.