Islamabad  – The Federal Secretary Commerce, Zafar Mehmood has said that the government would not implement the free trade regime with India without ensuring level playing field to Pakistani exporters.

He said this while addressing business community during the visit to Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

He said that private sector is the engine of economic growth and government has already started various training programs for capacity building of exporters, especially for the women entrepreneurs.

Talking about the negative list, the Federal Secretary said that all decisions would be made keeping in view the national interests as WTO trading arrangements also provide Trade Defense Measures in case of unfair trade practices or any threat to local industry.

He said that Ministry of commerce would further simplify these laws for facilitation He said that Ministry of Commerce is in the process to publish sector-wise brochures regarding trade with India in which all the information about size of markets and trends of exportable items would be included.

To a question Zafar Mehmood said that Ministry level talks would likely be held in the next month for normalizing the business visas and other policies. Secretary Commerce informed the business community that Pakistan would get GSP Plus status very soon for its exports from the European Union that results in 80 percent of our local items would get duty free access to EU markets.

In his welcome address, Yassar Sakhi Butt, President ICCI said that Ministry of Commerce and ICCI have common mandate, thus regular interaction between both the organizations would provide benefit to the business community and accelerate business activities in the country.