Non-Discriminatory Market Access: Pakistan looks to open up trade with

Discussion in 'Economy & Infrastructure' started by Srinivas_K, Feb 28, 2014.

  1. Srinivas_K

    Srinivas_K Senior Member Senior Member

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    Non-Discriminatory Market Access: Pakistan looks to open up trade with India

    Non-Discriminatory Market Access: Pakistan looks to open up trade with India
    By Shahbaz RanaPublished: February 28, 2014
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    Finance Minister Ishaq Dar. PHOTO: ZAFAR ASLAM/EXPRESS
    ISLAMABAD:
    Pakistan has in principle decided to revive the process of normalising trade with India, barely days after Adviser to the Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs ruled out its possibility in the near future.
    A special government panel constituted to examine trade ties with New Delhi on Thursday decided to ask the federal cabinet to approve the fresh roadmap for granting Non-Discriminatory Market Access (NDMA) – a term coined after Most Favoured Nation (MFN) became controversial – to India, sources told The Express Tribune. The new term will grant India the same benefits as envisaged under MFN.
    A proposal to soften trade restrictions at the Wagah border, and a new timetable to phase out the Negative List – 1,209 items that cannot be imported from India – will be presented before the federal cabinet in its next meeting, they said.
    According to the sources, the decision of the special panel – which is led by Finance Minister Ishaq Dar and includes Commerce Minister Khurram Dastgir and Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs Tariq Fatemi – comes despite reservations expressed by the Foreign Office (FO). They said the FO did not believe normalising trade ties with India could provide any of the benefits Pakistan expected.
    However, former commerce secretary Zafar Mahmood, who played a key role in normalising trade relations with India during 2011-2012, said the special panel conducted its evaluations with ‘an open mind’.
    Talking to The Express Tribune, one of the participants of the special panel’s meeting said at this stage, Pakistan would be much better off if the cabinet decided to go for complete trade normalisation with India.
    “India has agreed to even more concessions now than the threshold agreed during secretary level talks in September 2012,” he said.
    According to the proposals the panel agreed upon, Pakistan will, as a first step, allow India to import all goods through the Wagah-Attari border – only 137 items can be imported through the border currently. The border would also remain open 24 hours a day, sources said.
    In response to Pakistan’s initiative, India will have to bring down its Pakistan-specific sensitive list to 100 tariff lines from the current level of 614 items.
    Meanwhile, Dar urged officials of the commerce ministry to ensure all concessions Pakistan granted to India were made on a reciprocal basis.
    The transition towards the full normalisation of trade relations with India began in March 2012 by moving from a Positive List of 1,936 tradable goods to a Negative List of 1,209 prohibited items. Pakistan had announced it would phase out the Negative List by the end of 2012 but India’s reluctance to remove non-tariff barriers stalled the normalisation process.

    Non-Discriminatory Market Access: Pakistan looks to open up trade with India – The Express Tribune
     
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  3. Neo

    Neo Senior Member Senior Member

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    Re: Non-Discriminatory Market Access: Pakistan looks to open up trade

    Positive development though Imho 1.209 prohibited items is still way too much.
     
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  4. Neo

    Neo Senior Member Senior Member

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    Re: Non-Discriminatory Market Access: Pakistan looks to open up trade

    Finally the retailers will be able to import cheap food and food processing items from India and bring down inflation on food items.
     
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  5. Yusuf

    Yusuf GUARDIAN Administrator

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    Re: Non-Discriminatory Market Access: Pakistan looks to open up trade

    Most of these goods made it Pakistan regardless.

    But then I don't know how long this will last. Just recently when borders were opened to trucks, Pak sent a drugs across. This halted business.
     
  6. Neo

    Neo Senior Member Senior Member

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    Re: Non-Discriminatory Market Access: Pakistan looks to open up trade

    When EU expanded eastwards and included Poland few years ago and now Romania and Bulgaria we saw an influx of criminal activities and smuggling as these countries are known for such things. Russian maffia is using these countries as hub for drug distribution all over westen europe. It does not stop the countries to close the routes; stricter security is the answer to the problem.
     
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  7. Srinivas_K

    Srinivas_K Senior Member Senior Member

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    Re: Non-Discriminatory Market Access: Pakistan looks to open up trade

    Last time an India show happened in Pakistan, Indian goods were all sold out within a short time.
     
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