Pakistan has yet to grant the most favoured nation (MFN) status to India, Parliament was informed today.
"India and Pakistan have no formal bilateral trade agreement. India granted the MFN status to Pakistan in 1996. Pakistan is yet to reciprocate," Commerce and Industry Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said in a written reply to the Rajya Sabha. Grant of the status to India would help in further boosting trade between the countries.
The meeting between Prime Ministers of India and Pakistan in May held that the two countries could move immediately towards full trade normalisation on the basis of the September 2012 roadmap worked out between commerce secretaries of both the sides, Sitharaman said.
Pakistan has decided to postpone grant of Non- Discriminatory Market Access (NDMA) status to India due to lack of consensus at home. NDMA is a nomenclature chosen by the Pakistan government to avoid political ramifications at home of giving India the MFN status.
Bilateral trade between India and Pakistan touched USD 2.6 billion in 2012-13. India's main exports to Pakistan include sugar, man-made filaments and chemicals, while its imports comprise mineral fuels, among others.