'Bilateral trade roadmap with India well set

ISLAMABAD (APP) - The visit of Pakistans biggest ever trade delegation to India and bilateral talks between the two countries have been declared as historic and would result in positive initiatives. This was stated by Chief Executive TDAP, Tariq Iqbal Puri after the concluding session of India-Pakistan Business conclave in New Delhi. The roadmap for bringing the two way trade to a greater volume than the present one, has been prepared as both the sides agreed to take measures in removing irritants preventing trade, Puri said while talking to the media, says a statement issued by the TDAP here Saturday. Puri said after chairing the seminar on the subject Impediments in Pakistan-India Trade, that top entrepreneurs are quite optimistic about the outcome of the delegations visit to India which has held top level meetings and discussed all the options of road, air and sea routes for the enhancing the trade. He told that it was first time that Federation of India Chambers of Commerce and Industry has arranged high level meeting in which officials and Indian Customs, Commerce Ministry, Reserve Bank of India and others shared the views and explained various issues. Replying a question, he said that the trade between the two countries would definitely be increased as this was the first ever occasion when not only top companies from both sides gave presentation of their respective companies and business to business meetings were held both In Mumbai and Delhi and hundreds of businessmen came to the B2B meetings and made inquiries with their Pakistani counterparts. He said that those who attended B2B meetings were satisfied except a few hurdles due to Customs or logistic problems. He said that as Indian government has completed its huge Customs check post at Wagha border, the chances of greater inflow of Pakistan cargo to India is quite possible. He said that he signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Chief of India Trade and Investment Promotion Organization (ITPO) under which both the countries would now participate in fairs and exhibitions and other events besides exchanging of trade and investment delegations in future. He said that two major issues have also been discussed with the meetings with Indian side and we received positive response from Indian Commerce Minister Anand Sharma who on the issue of Indian objection against Pakistan in the WTO on EUs economic package, has assured to withdraw his objection and let Pakistan avail the package which was offered by EU as gesture after massive floods in Pakistan last year. On joint 'communiqu he said that doubling the trade between the two countries in next three years is not that difficult as potential of the two countries is far greater than mere US$6 billion. He said that the commitment by Indian Commerce Minister Anand Sharma and his Pakistani counterpart, Makhdoom Amin Fahim, is part of a bid to put back on track peace efforts. Tariq Puri said that the visit by Makhdoom Amin Fahim, who was accompanied by a more than 70-member high-level business delegation, was the first by a Pakistani commerce minister to India in 35-years. India is eyeing improved trade ties with Pakistan as a way to gain better access to Pakistan while latter is keen to tap Indias vast market of 1.2 billion people. He expressed the hope that Indian exhibitors would participate in Expo Pakistan 2011 being held later this month.

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