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Australia-India trade deal ‘within days’

Australia-India trade
A free trade deal with India could be completed by the end of the week. Photo: AAP
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Trade Minister Dan Tehan says a free trade deal with India could be completed by the end of the week.

It comes after multiple rounds of negotiations between the two countries, with former prime minister Tony Abbott even called in last year to help the stalled negotiations .

Two-way goods and services trade with India is worth over $24 billion.

“I’m hoping that we will be able to do it over the next few days,” Mr Tehan told ABC Radio National on Monday.

“These are tough discussions and obviously in the end we’ve got to make sure it is in our national interest and … in India’s national interest.

“My hope would be we would have something by the end of this week or early next week.”

The deal is considered critical for Australia, following recent export bans from China.

There have been several rounds of negotiations since 2011, but a trade agreement has failed to eventuate.

The trade deal, formally known as the Australia-India Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement, would seek to boost opportunities in education, agriculture, energy, tourism and infrastructure among other areas.

During negotiations in August, Mr Tehan said both nations wanted to progress the deal but it required a serious commitment from both sides.

– AAP