Sri Lanka-Thailand Free Trade Agreement Gains Cabinet Approval
January 03, Colombo (LNW): Cabinet Spokesman and Mass Media Minister Dr. Bandula Gunawardena announced the official endorsement to proceed with the proposed Sri Lanka-Thailand Free Trade Agreement during the weekly cabinet media briefing held at the Government Information Department.
The ninth round of negotiations for this agreement took place in Colombo from December 18 to December 20, 2023. Following these discussions, key aspects have been finalized, with legal and institutional matters forwarded to working groups for comprehensive legal scrutiny.
Notably, both parties reached an agreement during the 9th negotiation round to incorporate provisions for the simultaneous elimination of 50% of cumulative duties applicable to the Harmonized System classification codes listed in the Sensitive List of the Tariff Liberalization Programme. This elimination process is set to commence at the start of the 16th year from the Agreement’s entry into force.
Furthermore, an accord has been reached to truncate the duration of the Tariff Liberalization Programme from 18 years to 16 years based on the discussions held during this negotiation round. This move signifies a mutual commitment to expediting the trade liberalization process between Sri Lanka and Thailand, demonstrating a shared dedication to fostering increased economic collaboration and market access.