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PIB Summaries 13 May 2024

  1. ASEAN-India Trade in Goods Agreement
  2. International Nurses Day


Context:

The 4th Joint Committee meeting for the review of AITIGA (ASEAN-India Trade in Goods Agreement) occurred in Putrajaya, Malaysia from May 7-9, 2024.

Relevance:

GS II: International Relations

Dimensions of the Article:

  1. About Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN)

 

Event Overview:

  • Delegates from India and all 10 ASEAN countries actively participated in the discussions.

Initiation and Progress of Review:

  • Discussions to review AITIGA and enhance its trade-facilitative aspects commenced in May 2023.
  • The Joint Committee overseeing the review process has convened four times thus far.
  • Initial meetings finalized the Terms of Reference and the Negotiating Structure for the review negotiations.
  • Negotiations for the review commenced from the third meeting held on February 18-19, 2024, in New Delhi.


Trade Dynamics and Outlook:

  • ASEAN is a significant trade partner of India, contributing to 11% of India’s global trade.
  • Bilateral trade between India and ASEAN reached USD 122.67 billion during 2023-24.
  • The upgrade of AITIGA is expected to further enhance bilateral trade.
  • The next meeting, the 5th Joint Committee meeting, is scheduled from July 29-31, 2024, in Jakarta, Indonesia.

About Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN)

The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) is a regional intergovernmental organization comprising Ten Countries in Southeast Asia.

Members of ASEAN
  1. Indonesia
  2. Malaysia
  3. Philippines
  4. Singapore
  5. Thailand
  6. Brunei
  7. Vietnam
  8. Laos
  9. Myanmar
  10. Cambodia
ASEAN’s Objectives:
  1. To promote intergovernmental cooperation and facilitates economic, political, security, military, educational, and sociocultural integration among its members and other countries in Asia.
  2. To maintain close and beneficial cooperation with existing international and regional organisations.
  3. To promote regional peace and stability through abiding respect for justice and the rule of law and adherence to the principles of the United Nations Charter.
  4. To accelerate economic growth, social progress and cultural development for a prosperous and peaceful community of Southeast Asian Nations.

A major partner of Shanghai Cooperation Organisation, ASEAN maintains a global network of alliances and dialogue partners and is considered by many as the central union for cooperation in Asia-Pacific.

  • The motto of ASEAN is “One Vision, One Identity, One Community”.
  • ASEAN is headquartered in Jakarta, Indonesia.
  • 8th August is observed as ASEAN Day.
  • In 1967 ASEAN was established with the signing of the ASEAN Declaration (Bangkok Declaration) by its founding fathers: Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore and Thailand.
  • Chairmanship of ASEAN rotates annually, based on the alphabetical order of the English names of Member States.
  • ASEAN is the 3rd largest market in the world – larger than EU and North American markets.
ASEAN Plus Three

ASEAN Plus Three is a forum that functions as a coordinator of co-operation between the ASEAN and the three East Asian nations of China, South Korea, and Japan.

ASEAN Plus Six
  • further integration to improve existing ties of Southeast Asia was done by the larger East Asia Summit (EAS), which included ASEAN Plus Three as well as India, Australia, and New Zealand.
  • The group became ASEAN Plus Six with Australia, New Zealand, and India, and stands as the linchpin of Asia Pacific’s economic, political, security, socio-cultural architecture, as well as the global economy.
  • This group acted as a prerequisite for the planned East Asia Community which was supposedly patterned after the European Community (now transformed into the European Union).
ASEAN-India Trade in Goods Agreement (AITIGA)
  • The ASEAN-India Trade in Goods Agreement was signed and entered into force in 2010.
  • Under the Agreement, ASEAN Member States and India have agreed to open their respective markets by progressively reducing and eliminating duties on more than 75% coverage of goods.
ASEAN-India Trade in Services Agreement (AITISA)
  • The ASEAN-India Trade in Services Agreement was signed in 2014.
  • It contains provisions on transparency, domestic regulations, recognition, market access, national treatment and dispute settlement.
ASEAN-India Investment Agreement (AIIA)
  • The ASEAN-India Investment Agreement was signed in 2014.
  • The Investment Agreement stipulates protection of investment to ensure fair and equitable treatment for investors, non-discriminatory treatment in expropriation or nationalisation as well as fair compensation.
ASEAN-India Free Trade Area (AIFTA)
  • The ASEAN–India Free Trade Area (AIFTA) is a free trade area among the ten member states of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and India.
  • The free trade area came into effect in 2010.
  • The ASEAN–India Free Area emerged from a mutual interest of both parties to expand their economic ties in the Asia-Pacific region.
  • India’s Look East policy was reciprocated by similar interests of many ASEAN countries to expand their interactions westward.
  • The signing of the ASEAN-India Trade in Goods Agreement paves the way for the creation of one of the world’s largest FTAs – a market of almost 1.8 billion people with a combined GDP of US $ 2.8 trillion.
  • The AIFTA will see tariff liberalisation of over 90% of products traded between the two dynamic regions, including the so-called “special products,” such as palm oil (crude and refined), coffee, black tea and pepper.


Context:

The International Nurses Day 2024 marks the 204th anniversary of the birth of Florence Nightingale.

Relevance:

GS-II International Relations

International Nurses Day

  • International Nurses Day is a celebration on the 12th of May every year to commemorate the anniversary of Florence Nightingale.
  • Florence Nightingale is considered to be the founder of modern nursing.
  • 2024 Theme: Our Nurses. Our Future. The economic power of care.

Significance of the day

  • Nurses account for more than half of all the world’s health workers. It will encourage the entire nurse community and the public to celebrate the day as well as would provide necessary information and resources to raise the profile of the nursing profession.
  • The COVID-19 pandemic is a stark reminder of the vital role nurses play. Without nurses and other health workers, it is not possible to win the battle against outbreaks
Florence Nightingale
  • Florence Nightingale was a British social reformer, statistician, and the founder of modern nursing.
  • She is famously known as “The Lady with the Lamp” making rounds of wounded soldiers at night.
  • Nightingale came to prominence while serving as a manager and trainer of nurses during the Crimean War.
  • Much of her published work was concerned with spreading medical knowledge.

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