ISLAMABAD   -    The National Security Committee’s decision to suspend all bilateral trade with India would be more damaging to New Delhi than Islamabad, as Pakistan’s annual exports to the neighbouring country are worth few million dollars.

The NSC on Wednesday suspended all bilateral trade and downgraded Pakistan’s diplomatic relations with New Delhi following India’s recent actions in occupied Kashmir.

Officials in the Ministry of Commerce and independent economists said that the decision to suspend the bilateral would not dent the Pakistan’s exports, which are worth few million dollars.

According to official statistics, the total trade volume between India and Pakistan are at around $2.5 billion with Pakistan’s only $500 million. The trade balance always remained in favour of India.

“Pakistan is not dependent on India in terms of trade,” said an official of the ministry.

He further said that trade between the two countries is based on quick imports from India to bridge a gap in case there is any shortage of products.

Pakistan imports cotton yarn, textile, sugar, machinery and chemicals, among other items from India while India mainly imports cement, textile and leather products, vegetables and fruits from Pakistan.

According to the ministry data, Pakistan had exported $100 million worth fresh fruits to India last fiscal year. These fruits include dates, figs, pineapples, avocados, guavas, mangoes and mangosteens, fresh or dried. Second major item exported to India last fiscal year was cement. The third biggest export to India are Sesamum seeds.

Earlier, in February 2019, in the wake of the Pulwama attack, India had withdrawn the Most Favoured Nation (MFN) status that was granted to Pakistan in 1996. Later, the Indian government had also imposed 200 percent duty on the imports from Pakistan. However, Pakistan had not reciprocated it at that time.

Meanwhile, the business community also announced to support the government’s decision to suspend trade with India. Traders said that Pakistan’s integrity stands first above all trades and relationship.