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Pakistan positive but cautious about granting MFN status to India
Nov '11
Indian textile industry enjoys a comparative benefit in artificial fibres and synthetics over other nations and hence the Pakistani Government needs to ensure a protective measure in place before conferring India with the status of Most Favoured Nation (MFN), All Pakistan Textile Mills Association (APTMA) Chairman Mohsin Aziz said.

Mr. Aziz was reacting to Pakistan Federal Secretary Commerce Zafar Mahmood's statement that discussions with the industry stakeholders' regarding conferring India with MFN status are likely to conclude soon.

Addressing a consultative meeting organized at the APTMA Punjab office, Mr. Mahmood said post-consultations the matter would be placed before the Cabinet for obtaining its approval.

He emphasizing that regularisation of trade with India was of vital importance in present times, but said that the concerns of Pakistan's industry with regards to Non-Tariff Barriers (NTBs) from India are also quite justifiable.

He noted that the developed nations always kept their political differences at bay to sustain their trade ties and cited examples of the EU and Turkey, China and Taiwan, and Hong Kong and China.

Mr. Mahmood said the Commerce Minister relied on consultations with the industry stakeholders for deciding the future course of action, which may lead to an agreement on trade regularization with India on an equal basis.

According to Mr. Mahmood, the issue of NTBs was raised during Commerce Minister Makhdoom Amin Fahim's recent visit to India and informed that the Minister recommended removal of NTBs as a permanent solution for trade regularisation with India.

He further informed that the second round of consultations was likely to begin soon and expressed optimism that both the countries would act amenably to sort out all the trade barriers.

He also hailed India's move of supporting the EU proposal for granting trade concessions on import of 75 items from Pakistan.

Pakistan would look forward to India's support for obtaining GSP Plus facility in 2014, he added.

Fibre2fashion News Desk - India

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