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Sri Lanka-Singapore Free Trade Agreement (Slsfta)

In an interview with Channel NewsAsia about the agreement, Sri Lankan High Commissioner Nimal Weeraratne said in Singapore that the two governments had found that they could conclude a „modern, comprehensive and higher value free trade agreement“ between the two countries. Beyond tariffs, the SLSFTA has taken into account the issue of non-tariff measures, including by mentioning separately and in detail the quality standards applicable to foodstuffs in both countries, which must be met in both countries.3 These graphs can serve as a benchmark for future free trade agreements, as this is a transparent presentation of quality standards that would prevent exporters from facing unexpected regulatory barriers. The agreement also contains detailed provisions on service delivery obligations, including separate chapters on telecommunications and e-commerce. These provisions are expected to help facilitate digital trade between the two economies in the coming years and the development of the ambitious port City financial centre in Sri Lanka. The World Trade Organization(WTO) General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS) defines 04 ways to deal with a service known as „supply types“ 11 Sri Lanka`s Ministry of Development Strategies and International Trade. Free trade agreement between the Socialist Democratic Republic of Sri Lanka and the Republic of Singapore. Available at modsit.gov.lk/32-uncategorised/115-free-trade-agreement-between-the-democratic-socialist-republic-of-sri-lanka-and-the-republic-of-singapore.html. MTI explained the main benefits of the agreement and said Sri Lanka would eliminate tariffs on 80% of Singapore`s exports over a 15-year period. 16 Sri Lanka Ministry of Development Strategies and International Trade. Appendix 2A – Elimination of tariffs in Singapore and Sri Lanka. Available at: www.modsit.gov.lk/images/pdf/free_trade_agareement/Chapter-02-2-NT-and-Market-Access-for-Goods-annexe 2-A-Elimination of General Tariffs.pdf. As Sri Lanka is closely integrated into the Trade and Trade Network of Southeast Asia through the SLSFTA, it is moving closer to the possibility of becoming a formal part of ASEAN`s commercial architecture.