New Delhi–India’s concerns on Canadian temporary foreign workers entry programme, which has become more stringent over time and acts as a barrier for Indian IT professionals, are being examined by Canada, the Indian Commerce Ministry said on Friday.
“India took up the issues of Canada’s Temporary Foreign Workers Entry Programme — which has acted as a barrier for the Indian information technology companies invested in Canada to source Indian IT professionals — as the norms for temporary entry have become more and more stringent,” the statement said here following Commerce Minister Nirmala Sitharaman’s meeting with her Canadiaan counterpart Chrystia Freeland in Toronto on Thursday.
“The Trade Minister of Canada assured that a parliamentary committee is examining these issues and some of the concerns are likely to be addressed,” it said.
Sitharaman is in Toronto for the third India-Canada Annual Ministerial Dialogue while Finance Minister Arun Jaitley is slated to visit Canada in the first week of October, the statement added.
Both Sitharaman and Freeland also discussed issues which have stalled the negotiations of the proposed free-trade agreement between the two nations.
The Indian ministry said the Canadian side is looking into issues concerned with the movement of professionals and provisions that could be built into the free-trade pact, also known as the Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA).
Both sides expressed strong commitment to take forward the negotiations in CEPA and Foreign Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement (FIPA) and expressed the desire for their early conclusion, the statement said.
Besides, the ministers discussed ways to expand trade and having more business-to-business interface with the constitution of a CEOs Forum by Canada.
Canada also assured India of moving faster in constituting the Canadian side list of the CEOs Forum, the statement said.
Both sides also agreed to cooperate at international fora on the World Trade Organisation’s Trade Facilitation Agreement on Services as well as on the unfinished agenda items of WTO’s Doha Round, given the complementarity of both the nations on these issues, it added.