Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said on Wednesday that he will move forward on the process of liberalization of trade in South Asia.
The Prime Minister, who left for Maldives to attend the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) summit starting Thursday, also said that he was looking forward to having bilateral discussions with other South Asian leaders, including Pakistani counterpart Yousuf Raza Gilani.
"At the SAARC summit, we expect to move forward the process of liberalization of trade under the South Asian free trade area agreement," Singh said in a departure statement.
"We also expect to sign agreements on implementation of regional standards, multilateral arrangements on recognition of conformity assessment, rapid response to natural disasters, and establishment of a SAARC seed bank," he added.
India will work "to promote regional integration as well as the development of a South Asian identity at the forthcoming summit," the Prime Minister said.
Hoping he may hold talks with other South Asian leaders, Singh said: "on the margins of the SAARC summit, I look forward to the opportunity of holding bilateral discussions with other South Asian heads of states or governments who will be participating in the summit."