LAHORE: Pakistan-India Chamber of Commerce President SM Muneer has appreciated government’s decision for reducing import duties of 340 items from SAARC countries.
“Trade between Pakistan and India should be increased. Due to trade between SAARC countries, poverty and unemployment will be reduced in the subcontinent and this would cast positive effects on people”. He said this over the decision of implementation of reducing the import duties vide Notification No.1274 (I)/2006 issued by the Federal Board of Revenue.
Federal Government has announced reduction of custom duties to 5% on import of 340 items including vegetables, VCR and VCP. The reduction in duties has been implemented from 1st January, 2014. Before this, custom duties were 7% to 20%. The reduction in custom duties is made on onion, ginger, other vegetables and its mixture, vehicle tracking system, laser video disc player, VCR, VCP, walkie talkie set, modem, amplifier, dubbing system, networking equipments, telephone attachments, polishes, creams, buckram, white cement, kinnoo, oranges, mango pulp and raw materials used in ceramic industries. In addition to these, custom duty on crude oil would be reduced by Rs 2,263 per metric tonne.
SM Muneer said that SAARC countries should introduce common currency like in European Countries and revolutionary steps should be taken for issuance of visas, banking system cooperation, establishment of link of mobile phone services and relaxation on arrival and departure of air planes.
He said that present government under the leadership of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif is trying to improve trade and diplomatic relations with neighbouring countries and now the neighbouring countries should come forward and remove hindrances in trade transactions so that the SAARC countries could have a brighter future.
He advocated the reduction in duties saying that in this way legal formalities would be fulfilled due to which smuggling would be controlled and people would buy better and cheap commodities.