Chief Minister V. S. Achuthanandan reiterated here on Friday that the negative list cited by the Central Government as applicable to the ASEAN free trade agreement did not have the approval of the other signatories of the agreement.
The Chief Minister acknowledged that he had received the list of 489 items from the Union Minister Anand Sharma. However, there was no point in speaking about a negative list as along as it did not have the approval of all the signatories.
The agreement would come into force from January next year. The Government should tax items in the list which lacked approval of ASEAN countries. Then only could the farmers be saved from fall in prices of agricultural commodities.
Mr. Achuthanandan protested against the Central Government's move to sell the shares of profit making government companies. “What do the Defence Minister A.K. Antony and Union Minister Vayalar Ravi have to say about that?”
He also complained that the Centre had reduced the subsidy sanctioned to Fertilizers and Chemical Travancore Limited. The subsidy cut would hit the farmers using fertilizers along with imports from ASEAN countries.
The Chief Minister announced that the Cabinet had decided to introduce online registration of companies. The system would also allow e-payment of stamp duty.