//Pak-India trade potential seen at USD 1-5b

Pak-India trade potential seen at USD 1-5b

Wednesday January 25, 2006, IRNA.

Pakistan’s premier bank, the State Bank of Pakistan, has estimated the potential of Pakistan-India trade within the range of USD 1-5 billion in a year.

Local media reports said that according to an analysis of bilateral trade composition in the year 2004 there were 1,181 items worth USD 3.9 billion common to Pakistan-India exports and imports, the figure pointing to a huge potential for boosting bilateral trade.

Likewise, against 2,646 common items in Pakistan’s imports worth USD 7 billion in the year 2004, India had exports worth over USD 15 billion.

The bank study noted that in such case where over 50 percent of those items were imported, the unit value of Pakistan’s imports was more than the unit value of India’s exports, hinting at the possibility of the import potential from India to Pakistan of many of these items at a far cheaper cost than what is being paid now.

The study assesses Pakistan’s average national savings in foreign exchange between USD 400 million to USD 900 million provided the Pakistani government expands its positive list of importable items from India.

The reports said that bilateral trade had witnessed a significant increase after the start of the Pak-India peace process in February 2004.