ISLAMABAD - Endorsing to grant the Most Favoured Nation (MNF) status to India the federal cabinet on Wednesday assured that matter would be put to the Parliament for formal approval. The federal cabinet unanimously endorsed to grant the MFN status to India. Pakistan fully stands by its principled stance on Kashmir issue. Despite granting MFN status to India, Pakistan will never budge on its stance on Kashmir issue and will continue political, moral and diplomatic support to their Kashmiri brethren, said Information Minister Firdous Ashiq Awan while addressing a press conference after the federal cabinet. The federal cabinet also decided Aghaz-e-Haqooq-e-Balochistan package would be fully implemented by the end of this year. She said the cabinet met under the chairmanship of Prime Minister Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani and paid rich tribute to Begum Nusrat Bhutto for her contributions for democracy and fateha was also offered during the meeting. Responding a to question about giving MFN status to India, the minister said that although a lot of concerns were expressed on giving MFN status to India by the cabinet members, yet all the concerns were cleared. Commerce minister and secretary have given detailed briefing to the cabinet covering all the aspects for giving MFN status to India, she added. The minister said that a detailed discussion was carried out on granting MFN status to India as almost all the aspects were touched. No question arises of making any compromise on Pakistans stance on Kashmir, she assured media, after receiving volley of questions. Responding to a question, Firdous Ashiq Awan said that they had decided to follow the vision of the Quaid-e-Azam so the federal cabinet unanimously endorsed the MFN status to India. After the partition and despite war between India and Pakistan on Kashmir in 1948, Pakistan and India had signed General Agreement on Tariffs import and Trade (GATT) under that all member-states had MFN status, she added. The minister further said that granting MFN status to India was started in 1947 and 1948 as Father of Nation Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah and Quaid-e-Millat Nawabzada Liaqat Ali Khan had initiated this vision. To a question, the minister said all the stakeholders were taken on board before reaching this accord. She further said that Kashmir cause, strategic interests, balance of power and import bill would not affect in trade with India. Commerce Minister during his visit to India had consulted Kashmiri leaders on MFN status to India, she said. The minister told the cabinet that Kashmiris on both sides of border were doing their bilateral trade and bus service. It would not damage Kashmir cause, she said while quoting the commerce minister. The minister said, We have been assured that trade with India would not affect our balance of power, strategic interests, Kashmir cause or our import bill. Pakistan has already assigned MFN status to over 100 countries, she added. The minister was of the view that the bilateral trade would be beneficial for our country. India had already given MFN status to Pakistan in 1995. Different Indian goods are being smuggled to our country via Dubai so it is better to do legal trade which would be beneficial for country and people as well, she maintained. To another question, the minister said that both countries were involved in talks for approval to trade for non-tariff items. Sharing the history of Pak-India trade ties, Secretary COMMERCE Zafar Mehmood said that these ties were blocked soon after 1965 war but India had given MFN status to Pakistan in 1995. Only Wagha border would be opened for trade through rail and road links, he said. As per the Afghanistan-Pakistan Transit Trade Agreement (APTTA), Afghanistan was allowed to send its goods to India through Wagha, he added. When asked how the Balochistan Chief Minister could control target killing incidents in the province as he spent around 20 days of month in Islamabad, the minister said that terrorism was not confined to the province alone and all-out efforts were being made to control it. She said that a committee had also been formed in this regard. The Prime minister said that we should respect the chief minister and his government who have mandate of the people, she said. The minister said that it was also decided that the dialogue committee should talk to rebels and then submit a comprehensive dialogue package. It would help in ascertaining the minds of rebels, she added. The minister directed that the heirs of Akbar Khan Bugti be contacted to ascertain whether they wanted Supreme Court Commission or they were happy with the Balochistan High Court Commission probing the Butgi murder case. The cabinet was informed that judicial inquiry into allotment of Gawadar land has been implemented. The Cabinet was informed that as result of the 7th NFC Award, financial resources of Balochistan have increased from Rs 43 billion in 2009 to Rs 108 billion in 2011-12. It was informed that special quota of 1,200 scholarship and HEC allocated 600 additional scholarships for Baloch youth. Rationalisation of royalty and gas development charge have been amicably settled, she said, adding that under reconciliatory efforts, 665 political prisoners have been released in Balochistan. She further said that that appointments at Gawadar Port from Bs-1 to 16 have been undertaken from locals while out of 40 contracts, 25 have been awarded to local contractors in Gawadar. The Prime Minister directed the provincial government to expedite the completion of uplift projects. Development package for Sui and Dera Bugti of Rs 4 billion has also been implemented while 1,934 posts have been filled with Baloch people while the rest are in the process under 6 per cent Balochistan quota of total 6,381 posts. The government relaxed qualification, age and height for Baloch youth in recruitments in coast guard, she added. Earlier, the Cabinet considered and accorded its approval to amendments in the Articles of agreement of the IMF. Board of Governors of IMF had approved certain amendments upon review of quotas and reform of Executive Board. The reforms ensure proper presence of emerging economies both in term of quota, representation and size of the Executive Board of IMF. State Bank of Pakistan in consultation with the Finance Davison had cast a positive vote for the amendment. The Cabinet considered and accorded its approval to the Preferential Trade Agreement (PTA) between Pakistan and Indonesia. The agreement would ultimately create a Free Trade Area between the two countries. Under the PTA, Indonesia agreed to offer market access to Pakistan on about 220 tariff lines on preferential rate. The Indonesian offer list includes products of export interest to Pakistan. The Cabinet considered and gave its approval for reduction in Pakistans Sensitive List under SAFTA, to 20% from 1169 to 936 tariff-line and hosting of sixth meeting of SAFTA Ministerial Council (SMC) and Seventh Meeting of SAFTA Committee of Expert (COE) at Islamabad in 2012. The Cabinet approved the proposal of the Commerce Division for normalisation of trade relations between Pakistan and India. The Secretary Commerce gave detailed presentation on the trade relations between India and Pakistan and its historical perspective. The Cabinet considered and accorded its approval to signing of SAARC agreement on Rapid Response to Natural Disasters. The draft agreement was expected to be signed during the 16th SAARC Summit at Thimphu in April 2010. The finalised version of the Agreement incorporates Pakistans amendments and suggestions. The Cabinet considered and accorded its approval to the Draft Biological & Toxin Weapons Convention Implementation Bill. The Convention of the Prohibition of the Development, Production and Stockpiling of Bacteriological (Biological) and Toxin Weapons and on their Destruction (BTWC), was adopted in 1972. Pakistan is a signatory to the convention. The Cabinet considered and gave its approval to start negotiations and sign Pak-Turkish Media Cooperation Agreement. Anadolu and Agency (AA) of Turkey and Associated Press of Pakistan (APP) have agreed to sign an agreement for long-term cooperation and exchange of News. This enhanced cooperation will not only provide access to Pakistani media-persons in the West Asian region but will also strengthen mutual understanding between the two brotherly countries. The Cabinet considered and gave its approval for Pakistans Membership of the Forum of Federation. Forum of Federation is a non-governmental organisation registered as a charitable organisation under the laws of Canada. The Cabinet considered and accorded its approval for Members Election Commission (Oath of office, term, salary, allowance, perks and privileges) bill, 2011. As no provision has been made in the Constitution or any law regarding oath of office, resignation, tenure of office, terms and conditions of the services of Members of Election Commission, Ministry of Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs has drafted a Bill in consultation with Election Commission of Pakistan. The Cabinet considered and formed the Committee to look into the Constitution (20th Amendment) Bill, 2011. The Cabinet formed a committee comprising finance minister and minister for petroleum to look into the Addendum to Lease Contract Agreement for Extension in the Lease period of Sandak Copper Gold Project.