India signs trade agreement with European Free Trade Association; PM Modi calls it a watershed moment.

Updated, March 10, 2024. 8.52 PM.

India has signed the Trade and Economic Partnership Agreement (TEPA) with the European Free Trade Association (EFTA) in New Delhi on Sunday. The deal was signed in the presence of Minister of Commerce and Industry Piyush Goyal.

Speaking on the occasion, Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal said TEPA is a modern and ambitious Trade Agreement. He highlighted that for the first time, India is signing a Free Trade Agreement with four developed nations, an important economic bloc in Europe. He further stated that for the first time in the history of FTAs, the binding commitment of a 100 billion dollar investment and one million direct jobs in the next 15 years has been given. He added that the agreement will give a boost to Make in India and provide opportunities to a young and talented workforce. The FTA will provide a window for Indian exporters to access large European and global markets.
The agreement comprises of 14 chapters with the main focus on market access related to goods, rules of origin, trade facilitation, and trade remedies among others.

EFTA is an important regional group, with several growing opportunities for enhancing international trade in goods and services. EFTA countries, Switzerland is the largest trading partner of India followed by Norway.
In a message, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that the Agreement symbolises the shared commitment to open, fair, equitable trade, as well as generating growth and employment for the youth. Mr Modi said, the 10th of March 2024 marks a new turn and a watershed moment in the bilateral relationship between India and the European Free Trade Association (EFTA) countries of Switzerland, Norway, Iceland, and Liechtenstein.