Wednesday Mar 31, 2021
ISLAMABAD: In a major development, the Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) on Wednesday allowed the import of cotton, yarn and sugar from India, according to sources.
It is considered as a step towards reviving suspended trade between the two nuclear-armed neighbours.
Bilateral trade between Pakistan and India remained suspended from 2019 and efforts for its resumption are underway.
The ECC also approved to import 0.5m metric tonnes of sugar from India.
The meeting was chaired by newly appointed Finance Minister Hammad Azhar.
According to official sources, the government was considering allowing the import of cotton from India keeping in view shortages of cotton in the country.
Textile tycoons say the import of cotton from India will hurt the farmers’ interest.
“We have already imported our required cotton from Central Asia and other parts of the world, so there is no need to grant this permission,” said an official dealing with the textile sector.
However, the ECC summary states that the import of cotton and yarn through the Wagah border will help meet domestic requirements at reasonable rates. It would meet the requirements of the domestic sector at cheap freight rates.