The Union cabinet on Wednesday approved the signing of a comprehensive economic cooperation agreement (CECPA) between India and Mauritius aimed at liberalizing and boosting trade.The pact will come into force on 1 March, an official statement said. With this, for the first time India will be a signatory to a kind of free-trade agreement with an African nation. The CECPA will cover 310 Indian export items, including food and beverages, agricultural products, textiles, base metals, electricals and electronic items, plastics and chemicals and products made of wood. In turn, Mauritius will benefit from preferential market access to India for 615 products such as frozen fish, speciality sugar, biscuits, fresh fruits, juices, mineral water, beer, alcoholic drinks, soaps, bags, medical and surgical equipment, and apparel. The move will remove barriers to imports and exports, and also promote services trade.