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No Most Favoured Nation but Non Discriminatory Access for India, says Pakistan

Islamabad: On the eve of a ministerial visit to India, Pakistan today said it is working on granting Non Discriminatory Access status instead of the contentious MFN.  “There is no rethink. The correct way is
PTI January 15, 2014 17:36 IST
PTI
Islamabad: On the eve of a ministerial visit to India, Pakistan today said it is working on granting Non Discriminatory Access status instead of the contentious MFN.  

“There is no rethink. The correct way is to have a normal trading relationship. What we are working on, at the moment, is what we call Non Discriminatory Access (NDA) which essentially means the same thing without any other connotation,” Pakistan Commerce Minister Khurram Dastgir Khan said in an interview to PTI here.

He was replying to a query on whether there was any rethink on the proposal to grant Most Favoured Nation (MFN) status to India as decided in 2012.

“It is just a name. What we want is normal trading relationship with both countries not having any negative list,” he said.

Various sections in Pakistan, especially the extreme right wing, had objected to the term “Most Favoured” being given to India because of the history of issues between the two sides.  Khan, who is set to travel to India tomorrow and meet with Commerce Minister Anand Sharma on the sidelines of the SAARC business leaders' conclave, said the purpose of his visit “of course is to put the trading relations back on the rails.” The commerce secretaries from both countries met today in New Delhi after 16 months.