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Saarc Preferential Trading Agreement (Sapta)

12 April 2021 No Comment

Where a concessioned product is imported into the territory of a contracting State, in a manner or quantity, under this agreement, in a manner or quantity likely to cause serious harm to the importing contracting State, the importing Member State concerned may, with prior consultation, except in critical circumstances, temporarily suspend, without discrimination, the concession granted under the agreement. When such a measure has taken place, the State Party that takes the initiative of this measure simultaneously informs the State party concerned and the Committee of Consultations with the State Party concerned and strives to reach an agreement acceptable to both parties to remedy it. If the State Party does not resolve the matter within 90 days of receiving the initial notification, the Participants Committee will meet within 30 days to review the situation and try to resolve the matter amicably. If consultations with the participants` committee do not resolve the issue within 60 days, the parties involved in this measure will have the right to withdraw equivalent concessions or other commitments that the Committee does not appreciate. Products in the national concession plans attached to this agreement may receive preferential treatment if they comply with the rules of origin, including specific rules of origin, for the least developed states listed in Schedule III. The South Asian Free Trade Area (SAFTA) is an agreement reached on 6 January 2004 at the 12th ASAC Summit in Islamabad, Pakistan. It has created a free trade area of 1.6 billion people in Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka to reduce tariffs on all goods traded by 2016. The SAFTA agreement entered into force on 1 January 2006[1] and is operational after the ratification of the agreement by the seven governments. SAFTA called on developing countries in South Asia (India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka) to reduce their tariffs to 20% during the first phase of the two-year period, until 2007. During the last five-year period, which ended in 2012, the 20% fee was reduced to zero in a series of annual reductions. The least developed countries of South Asia (Nepal, Bhutan, Bangladesh, Afghanistan and the Maldives) had an additional three years to reduce tariffs to zero. India and Pakistan ratified the treaty in 2009, while Afghanistan, SAARC`s eighth member state, ratified the SAFTA protocol on 4 May 2011.

[2] In accordance with the trade liberalization programme, States Parties must meet the following timetable for tariff reduction. Non-least developing countries should reduce the current tariff to 20% and reduce current tariffs in smaller developing countries by 30%. But the system of trade liberalization is not applicable to the sensitive list, since this list must be negotiated between the contracting countries and then negotiated.

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Kathy Becker (291 Posts)

Kathy is the CEO/President of the Company of Experts, Inc. and oversees this Small Woman Owned Business serving schools, colleges and universities, businesses, corporations and non-profits moving them from deficit models of planning and thinking to engagement, empowerment and collaboration.

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