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Dastgir briefs Parliament on trade ties with India

Dastgir briefs Parliament on trade ties with India

ISLAMABAD: Minister for Commerce Engineer Khurram Dastgir Khan told the Lower House of the Parliament that the government has been addressing the reservations and concerns of business sector regarding granting the most favorite nation (MFN) statute to India.
“Overall normalization of trade ties with India will be in favor of Pakistan both in short term and long term basis” he said while responding to the queries of the lawmakers in question hour.
While elaborating the reservations of Pakistani business sectors he said that agriculture, textile, automobile and other sectors had serious concerns over heavy subsidies imposed by Indian government as well as double taxation and duty on Pakistani value-added products in India. However, he said that government was addressing these reservations one by one and trying to solve issues related to non tariff barriers which would also be taken up at the meeting between commerce secretaries of both the countries scheduled on August 25.
Moreover, he said that better trade routes with neighbor countries had priority importance of Prime Minister’s vision about regional trade and government would provide maximum facilities to trade through Mona Bao Khokharpar route.
The federal minister further told Parliament that both the countries signed three agreements regarding developing new trade routes in 2012 along with formation of joint working group (JWG) to prepare reports in this regard.
“But, due to tension on Line of Control (LoC) between both the countries JWG could not be formed and the agreements suspended so far,” he added.
He said that organizations like Trade Development Authority of Pakistan (TDAP) and Pakistan Horticulture Development & Export Company (PHDEC) have been working for enhancement of Pakistani exports through around 51 trade offices in various countries.
“The Government has been following the policy to facilitate the private sector to enhance trade for which promotional efforts have to be calibrated accordingly” he informed lower house.
He added that TDAP kept circulating information regarding Pakistan’s major exports items to our Foreign Mission on a regular basis and it also endeavors to create awareness regarding our exportable products through its exhibitions in potential export markets.
“Due to government’s positive economic and export friendly policies Pakistani exports to China have increased to $ 6.1 billion from $ 6 billion,” Commerce Minister said.