India has in principle agreed to allow foreign direct investment (FDI) from Pakistan, a move expected to boost trade between the two countries, India’s Commerce and Industry Minister Anand Sharma said on Wednesday.
“During discussions, both sides agreed upon the desirability of promoting bilateral investments and removing impediments for such investments and to start the transition process for normalisation of trading of goods and services, including investment,” Sharma told Rajya Sabha, the upper house of parliament.
“The move is expected to enhance the commercial engagement and bilateral trade between India and Pakistan,” he said, according to the Indians Abroad News Service (INS).
Sharma said his ministry has requested the ministry of finance to amend the Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA) to allow FDI from Pakistan. Pakistan is the only country from where investment is not permitted in India.
Meanwhile, President Asif Ali Zardari said that granting the Most Favoured Nation (MFN) status to India was a paradigm shift in policy driven by the business sectors on both sides of the border.
The decision would reconstruct the region’s economies and increase its stability, he said while speaking at a dinner hosted by the Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) at the Presidency on Wednesday.
According to the Associated Press of Pakistan, the president said Pakistan has signed business investment treaties with many nations to boost business activities. The president said that Pakistan was committed to promoting an investor-friendly environment and it has much more to offer than bad news only.
Published in The Express Tribune, May 3rd, 2012.
More in PakistanKohistan bus accident kills 15, injures 22