Indian, Pakistani traders meet discuss trade modalities

November 7th, 2008 - 5:24 pm ICT by ANI  

Chakan da Bagh (Jammu and Kashmir), Nov 7 (ANI): Traders from India and Pakistan met on Thursday at Chakan da Bagh, in Jammu and Kashmir to discuss trade modalities.

Traders from Rawalakot in Pakistan administered Kashmir met traders from Poonch.

The focus of the discussion was to find a way to develop Line of Control (LoC) trade in a meaningful and mutually beneficial manner.

Pakistani traders called for a relaxation in norms to allow traders to visit freely and understand the working of local market better.

“Until traders from both sides visit each other and study the local markets, they would not get an understanding of the market, said Hameed Afzal, President, of the Rawalakot Traders Association.

An effort should be made to allow the free movement of traders to each other’’s territory in order to facilitate better ties,” Afzal added.

Though only 21 items have been cleared for trade, Indian traders said they would like the government to increase the number of items.

“I would like to appeal to the governments of both India and Pakistan to increase the number of items on the trade list so that the traders can do more business and earn well,” said Krishan Singh, General Secretary, Poonch Traders Association.

The opening of trade in Jammu and Kashmir is the latest in a series of tentative peace moves.

India and Pakistan have allowed limited trade across the front line last month, in an attempt to create “soft borders” allowing the movement of goods through Poonch-Rawalakot route in Jammu and Uri-Muzafarabad route in Kashmir.

A bus service connecting Srinagar and Muzaffarabad in PoK and another service between Poonch and Rawlakot is already in operation to facilitate people to people contact between the two sides of Jammu and Kashmir. (ANI)

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