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Post-floods trade assistance: India likely to lift veto on EU duty waiver

BRUSSELS/LONDON: Pakistan is hopeful that India will allow Islamabad to boost textile exports to Europe under a post-floods trade assistance scheme as relations between the neighbours improve, diplomats said.A meeting of trade ministers of Pakistan and India in New Delhi in late September is likely to yield an announcement that India will drop its veto...

SAMAA | - Posted: Sep 13, 2011 | Last Updated: 10 years ago
SAMAA |
Posted: Sep 13, 2011 | Last Updated: 10 years ago

BRUSSELS/LONDON: Pakistan is hopeful that India will allow Islamabad to boost textile exports to Europe under a post-floods trade assistance scheme as relations between the neighbours improve, diplomats said.A meeting of trade ministers of Pakistan and India in New Delhi in late September is likely to yield an announcement that India will drop its veto of a European Union duty-free programme for Pakistani products, diplomats in Brussels, Geneva and London said.“This is a very positive message from India to Pakistan and the government of Pakistan will very much appreciate it,” Pakistan’s High Commissioner to London Wajid Shamsul Hasan told Reuters. A trade ministry official in New Delhi would not be drawn on the outcome of the meeting but confirmed the ministers would discuss the issue when they meet on September 28.A formal approval by India could follow at the World Trade Organisation in early November and subsequently by the European parliament, opening the way for European duties to be lifted on a list of Pakistani textiles and other products, including ethanol, as early as next January, diplomats said.“We welcome news reports (of India planning to drop its veto) but of course await any decision at the level of the WTO,” said John Clancy, spokesman for the EU Executive Commission that has been pressing for the waiver. If it is approved, it is likely to add 100 million euros ($136 million) to Pakistan’s annual exports. AGENCIES

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