ISLAMABAD: The growth in Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of Pakistan could be at least 1.5% higher than the expected growth by 2014-15 if trade with India is fully normalised, said trade experts at a seminar titled “Pakistan-India Trade Normalisation”, organised by the Ministry of Commerce. This was a first of a series of seminars to engage stakeholders in dialogue on ways forward for trade normalisation with India. The normalisation of trade with neighbouring India could create approximately 169,000 jobs and help save Rs70 billion annually on purchase of goods, said participants. Addressing the participants, Secretary Commerce Qasim Niaz said that regional trade was very important to spur development and growth. He said that previous efforts to normalise trade with India could not deliver the expected results, however he added that since the paradigm shift of granting India the Most Favoured Nation (MFN) status was made in April 2011, there were better odds this time.
Published in The Express Tribune, July 3rd, 2013.
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