India, Pakistan agree to push economic ties forward

New Delhi, August 9:

Most favoured nation status, opening of the Wagah-Attari land route and a liberal visa regime were among the demands made by India at the opening session of the two-day long meet with Pakistan on trade issues here today. India also sought Pakistan’s support in making the South Asian Free Trade Area (SAFTA) operational by January 1 and called for measures to make shipment of goods by rail and road easier to boost economic ties between the two countries. “The time has come to address some of crucial economic and commercial issues to make substantive progress and boost our trade relations,” India’s commerce secretary S N Menon, said. Syed Asif Shah, Pakistan’s acting commerce secretary, led his country’s side at the two-day long meeting on economic and commercial cooperation under the framework of the composite dialogue between the two countries. The leader of the Pakistani team said his country, too, has been exploring ways to increase bilateral trade.