India and the South African Customs Union (Sacu) are expected to firm up the contours of a preferential trade agreement (PTA) over the next couple of months. New Delhi has already sent a list of 1,050 items on which it has sought lower customs duty, while Sacu - comprising South Africa, Botswana, Lesotho, Namibia, and Swaziland - wants India to cut tariffs on 748 items.
Commerce & industry minister Anand Sharma, who is in South Africa for talks, is pushing for a speedier decision on PTA which has been in the works for the last few years. Separately, India and South Africa are also close to finalizing a Bilateral Investment Promotion Agreement for which a draft was submitted to Sharma recently. Sources said the finance ministry and the ministry of external affairs.