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Pak team seeks better access to Indian market
July 07, 2003 17:05 IST
The visiting Pakistani business delegation on Monday demanded opening of more Indo-Pak border routes and introduction of direct rail and air links to facilitate movement of goods and people.
"Both India and Pakistan have vast trade potential. Unfortunately, trade between the two countires is less than one per cent of the global trade," President of India-Pakistan Chamber of Commerce and Industry Senator Ilyas Ahmed Bilour said at the India-Pakistan trade meeting in New Delhi.
He said while road routes for trade was non-existent, rail and air connectivity between the two countries has been erratic.
Echoing the discontent, A C Muthiah, president of Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry said trade infrastructure of both the countries was highly inadequate.
Railway connectivity for cargo movement was irregular and suffered from shortage of wagons and lack of coordination between the two railway authorities.
"The shipping linkage is very expensive and uneconomical, specially for high bulk low value products," Muthiah said.
Other members of the 115 strong delegation said movement of goods into India was restricted as most of the border routes were closed.
They asked the governments to consider opening up border routes other than the current Wagah-Attari route for easy passage of goods.However, their Indian counterparts said that this would be possible only if there was an increase in trade volumes.
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