ISLAMABAD  - UK’s International Trade Secretary, Rt Hon Anne-Marie Trevelyan MP, has launched the Developing Countries Trading Scheme (DCTS), providing tariff reductions and simpler terms of trade to 65 countries, including Pakistan, which will be implemented early next year.

The scheme will help these countries grow and prosper, and in turn tackle poverty by harnessing the power of trade, said a press release issued here on Tuesday. The DCTS replaces the UK’s Generalized Scheme of Preferences (GSP), a preferential trading system that provides tariff removals and reductions on various products, it added.

UK’s Trade Director for Pakistan and British Deputy High Commissioner, Karachi, Sarah Mooney, said “A prosperous UK-Pakistan relationship matters. As we celebrate 75 years of our bilateral relations, we want to further cement our strong ties and double bilateral trade by 2025. The newly announced DCTS Scheme will be pivotal in achieving this.”

Under the DCTS, Pakistan will continue to benefit from duty-free exports to the UK. In addition, the DCTS will remove tariffs on over 156 additional products. It will also simplify some seasonal tariffs, meaning additional and simpler access for Pakistan’s exports to the UK, it maintained.

It is pertinent to mention here that the total trade (goods and services) between the UK and Pakistan each year currently stands £2.9bn. In total, 94% of goods exported from Pakistan will be eligible for duty-free access to the UK. Pakistan will save £120m in tariffs on exports to the UK under the scheme.

Pakistan, and other DCTS countries, will also be supported to participate in the international trading system through the UK’s Trade Centre of Excellence, which will provide specialist support so that they can fully participate in the global trading system. This will include support on meeting trade standards, and participating in multilateral trade fora.