Pakistan approves India as 'most favoured' nation

Pakistan has already bestowed the designation on more than 100 countries, including China.

Afp November 02, 2011

ISLAMABAD: The cabinet on Wednesday approved a proposal granting India the status of "most favoured nation" in a bid to boost trade between the two countries.

"The federal cabinet has unanimously approved India as the most favoured nation," Information Minister Firdous Ashiq Awan told a news conference in Islamabad.

"This will bring economic benefits to us and this decision has been taken in the national interest," Awan added, conceding that some cabinet ministers had initially voiced objections to the proposal from the commerce ministry.

(Read: “Politics blocks MFN status to India”)

Pakistan has already bestowed the designation on more than 100 countries, including China - Pakistan's closest foreign ally and India's key rival.

Objections from cabinet ministers were related to the decades-old dispute over the Himalayan region of Kashmir, which has been the cause of two wars between India and Pakistan, and national security.

(Read: “‘Not at Kashmir’s cost’: Political parties create uproar over trade concessions to India”)

"The prime minister reviewed all the objections and took the cabinet into confidence that it will not hurt our national security, and then they unanimously approved this summary sent by the ministry of commerce," Awan said.

When Pakistan Commerce Minister Makhdoom Amin Fahim visited India in September, both sides agreed to double the trade within three years to $6 billion, set up a second trade border post and facilitate business visas for their citizens.

(Read: “India-Pakistan trade: India tackles non-tariff barriers head-on”)

India and Pakistan this year also resumed formal peace talks, broken off after the 2008 Mumbai attacks in which 166 people were killed.

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COMMENTS (68)

Pundit | 8 years ago | Reply | Recommend

Latest Vocab ++++++++++

MHN: Most Hated Nation: Amreeka

MLN: Most Loved Nation: China

MFN: Most Favored Nation: 100 except India

MCN: Most Confused Nation: Pakistan

G. Din | 8 years ago | Reply | Recommend

@John B: to jane "Spot on. Indian Muslim community will exploit it fully." In what way do you expect that to happen? They (Indian Muslims) certainly are no better or no worse than their non-Muslim counterparts. So, the only way they can exploit this fully is by being commission agents for Pakistan if Pakistanis insist on only buying through their Muslim brothers. I don't think non-Muslims sellers will have any problems with that; they will tag a surcharge. In the end, Pakistan will pay for it. Come to think, Pakistan may not be much better off than now when smugglers are tagging a surcharge. This sort of thing happens all the time in Muslim lands such as Saudi Arabia. Of course, there was one famous(?) Mr. 10%, I forget where.

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