DHAKA: The World Trade Organisation (WTO) has imposed conditions on flood-hit Pakistan in allowing duty-free export of 75 products to European Union (EU) countries, said Bangladesh Trade Secretary Golam Hossain, according to online newspaper bdnews24.com.
WTO gave Pakistan the opportunity to increase exports of 13 out of 75 products up to 20% in two years, Hossain told reporters on Tuesday.
Bangladesh objected to export of eight of 13 products, he said and added that two were dropped from the list while the remaining six were readymade garment products.
“EU decided to allow duty-free entry of 75 products from Pakistan to help the country recover from the damage caused by floods last year. But Bangladesh and India immediately informed the EU about their concerns of being commercially harmed,” Hossain said.
“Bangladesh told the EU to drop eight products from the list if they want to help Pakistan. Otherwise, the readymade garments sector of Bangladesh will be hurt. EU and WTO imposed special conditions on six of eight products objected to by Bangladesh. Pakistan got duty-free entry for two others,” he added.
Hossain said Pakistan will be able to earn an extra $20 million by exporting these two garment products in the next two years.
His comments came after Bangladesh Commerce Minister Faruk Khan told bdnews24.com that Dhaka was against “such uneven assistance to Pakistan.
Published in The Express Tribune, November 16th, 2011.
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