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Pakistan seeks Indian support to avail EU concessions
Mar '11
The National Assembly Committee on Commerce has been recently told that, at the Foreign Secretaries level talks to take place on March 21, Pakistan would seek India's support to gain EU concession for 75 textile items.

Following the massive floods in Pakistan during last year, the EU offered unilateral concessions to Pakistan in respect of certain items, but still this proposal requires the EU parliament and World Trade Organization's (WTO)'s sanction.

The Committee has been informed by Secretary Commerce Zafar Mahmod that, the Pakistani government has strongly raised its case before every forum, and even the foreign Minister and the Prime Minister have forwarded letters to other countries seeking their help in the matter.

The EU has formulated a scheme under which the qualifying least developed countries (LDCs) may avail the EU concessions, but this is subject to the approval of the United Nations Organization, which grants such sanction only after assessing the status of a country as LDC.

It was also clarified that, as the population in India, China and Pakistan is above 50 million, these countries do not comply the statutory requirements laid down under the LDC scheme and hence do not qualify for the benefit.

Even prior to the 2010 floods, Pakistan did attempt to gain these preferential benefits from the EU, but none of its efforts materialized then.

Fibre2fashion News Desk - India

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