India and UAE: Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA)- UPSC Current Affairs

INDIA AND UAE: COMPREHENSIVE ECONOMIC PARTNERSHIP AGREEMENT (CEPA)

Enhance your UPSC exam preparation with our daily edition of the Current Affairs Dialog box. In today’s edition, we will talk about India and UAE: Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA).

Check its relevance from the UPSC CSE syllabus:

For Prelims: Current Events of National and International Importance.

For Mains: Bilateral, Regional, and Global Groupings and Agreements involving India and/or affecting India’s interests.

Here is yesterday’s edition of the Current Affairs Dialog box, in case you missed reading it.

Why in News?

Recently, the Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) was signed between India and UAE.

  • The Agreement is expected to enter into force on 01 May 2022.

Probable Question

UAE is an important partner in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region to secure India’s Strategic Interests. Analyze

Key Points

Salient Features of the India-UAE CEPA

  •  India-UAE CEPA is a comprehensive agreement, which will cover:
    • Trade in Goods, Rules of Origin, Trade in Services, Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT), Sanitary;
    • Phytosanitary (SPS) measures, Dispute Settlement, Movement of Natural Persons, Telecom, Customs Procedures;
    • Pharmaceutical products, Government Procurement, IPR, Investment, Digital Trade and Cooperation in other Areas.
  • Tariff lines: It covers almost all the tariff lines dealt in by India (11,908 tariff lines) and the UAE (7581 tariff lines) respectively.
  •  Preferential Market Access: India will benefit from preferential market access provided by the UAE on over 97 % of its tariff lines which account for 99% of Indian exports to the UAE in value terms, especially for all labour-intensive sectors such as Gems and Jewellery, Textiles, leather, footwear.
    • India will also be offering preferential access to the UAE on over 90% of its tariff lines, including lines of export interest to the UAE. 
  • Both sides have also agreed to a separate Annex on Pharmaceuticals to facilitate access to Indian pharmaceuticals products, especially automatic registration and marketing authorization in 90 days for products meeting specified criteria.
CEPA

Image Source: Geology.com

At Glance: India-UAE Economic Relations

  • The UAE is currently India’s third-largest trading partner with bilateral trade in 2019/2020 valued at USD 59 billion. 
  • The UAE is also India’s second-largest export destination after the US, with exports valued at approximately USD 29 billion in 2019-2020. 
  • India was the UAE’s second-largest trading partner in 2019, with bilateral non-oil trade valued at USD 41 billion. 
  • The UAE is the eighth-largest investor in India, has invested USD 11 billion between April 2000 and March 2021, while investment by Indian companies in the UAE is estimated to be over USD 85 billion.
  • India and the UAE have recently entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) whereby the UAE has committed US$ 75 billion towards infrastructure development in India. 
  • Further, in October 2021, the Government of Dubai signed an MoU with the Jammu and Kashmir administration for real estate development, industrial parks, IT towers, multipurpose towers, logistics, medical colleges, super-specialty hospitals.
  • India’s major exports to the UAE: 
    • Petroleum products, precious metals, stones, gems and jewelry, minerals, food items such as cereals, sugar, fruits and vegetables, tea, meat, and seafood, textiles, engineering, and machinery products, and chemicals.
  • India’s top imports from the UAE: 
    • Petroleum and petroleum products, precious metals, stones, gems and jewelry, minerals, chemicals and wood, and wood products. 
  • India imported USD 10.9 billion of crude oil from the UAE in 2019-2020.

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Significance of the India-UAE CEPA

  • The Strategic location of the UAE makes it an important economic global hub.
  • India-UAE CEPA can augur well for boosting India’s export targets, providing momentum to the ‘Make in India’ initiative.
  • The India-UAE CEPA is the first bilateral trade accord concluded by the UAE, and it is India’s first bilateral trade agreement in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region.
  • It will transform bilateral economic and investment ties, open up emerging trade routes between Africa and Asia, promote global trade liberalization and propel economic growth in a post-COVID world.
  • It is expected to increase bilateral trade in goods to USD 100 billion within five years of the signed agreement and increase trade in services to USD 15 billion.
  • It will create new jobs, raise living standards, and provide wider social and economic opportunities in both nations. 
What is the Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA)?

A partnership agreement or cooperation agreement is more comprehensive than a Free Trade Agreement.

CEPA also looks into the regulatory aspect of trade and encompasses an agreement covering the regulatory issues. 

CEPA covers negotiation on the trade in services and investment and other areas of economic partnership. 

It may even consider negotiation in areas such as trade facilitation and customs cooperation, competition, and IPR.

India has signed CEPAs with South Korea and Japan.

News Source: Press Information Bureau

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