Ceca Unleash Massive M’sia, India Trade Potential – PM
PUTRAJAYA, Oct 27 – Malaysia and India have agreed that the long-negotiated comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement (CECA) between both countries will be signed by January 31, 2011, setting the stage for trade and investment linkages to move to a significantly higher level.
Hailing the pact which comes into effect on July 1, 2011, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said the landmark deal signifies a huge strategic move in a very positive manner, as it “will unleash tremendous potential in terms of bilateral trade and investment.”
“I am very confident that when the agreement comes into force, the bilateral trade target that we have set basically at US$15 billion by 2015 will be attained, if not, earlier,” Najib told a press conference after a bilateral meeting with visiting Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.
The CECA is a free trade agreement which covers trade in goods and services and investment as well as economic cooperation.
Potential areas for increased cooperation include infrastructure development, particularly in the construction industry, roads and highway projects, the capital market, information and communications technology, the oil and gas sector, reneweable energy sector, green technology as well as services.
Negotiations for the CECA began in February 2008 but was put on hold after two rounds, as both sides wanted to focus on completing the ASEAN-India Trade in Goods Agreement.
India ranks as Malaysia’s 15th largest trading partner.
With the agreement, Malaysian can explore immense opportunities in India, which is regarded as an Asian economic giant while Delhi in turn can use Malaysia as a gateway to the lucrative 550-million strong Asean market.