Liberalize trade with India: Pak Ministry

By agencies   |   Monday, 21 November 2005, 08:00 Hrs
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ISLAMABAD: Pakistan's Industry and Production Ministry has urged the government to liberalize trade with India, saying the country should "at once" move to trade based on Most Favored Nation status.

Liberalizing trade with India ahead of South Asian Free Trade Agreement (SAFTA) has significant potential for Pakistan in terms of lower prices for consumers, the ministry said in a draft report entitled 'Towards a prosperous Pakistan: A Strategy for Rapid Industrial Growth.

It said that before the SAFTA agreement comes into force, "Pakistan should, at once, move to MFN-based trade with India," the Daily Times newspaper reported.

"There will be more revenue for Pakistan from being able to tax the existing illegal trade. Besides, this the bilateral trade will result in greater market access and lower production cost," the report said.

Pakistan's industrial sector would be able to obtain cheap imports of several raw materials, the report said, adding the competitiveness of Pakistan's industrial products will increase through the liberalized trade with India.

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