Pakistan not backtracked on MFN: Khar | world | Hindustan Times
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Pakistan not backtracked on MFN: Khar

Pakistan has not backtracked on the issue of giving India Most Favoured Nation-status and officials of the two countries will work out modalities for normalising bilateral trade relations, foreign minister Hina Rabbani Khar said on Saturday.

world Updated: Nov 06, 2011 01:30 IST

Pakistan has not backtracked on the issue of giving India Most Favoured Nation-status and officials of the two countries will work out modalities for normalising bilateral trade relations, foreign minister Hina Rabbani Khar said on Saturday.

"There is an impression in the media that Pakistan made a decision (on MFN) and then backtracked. This is totally wrong. I want to tell you that we are consistent," Khar told reporters during an interaction in the eastern city of Lahore.

"We are absolutely not backtracking (on MFN). Pakistan is a responsible state and decision-making happens within a responsible environment," she said.

The federal cabinet "unanimously approved" a move to normalise trade relations with India during a meeting on Wednesday and "MFN is part of the normalisation of trade ties", she said.

This process of normalisation of trade relations will be handled by the Commerce Ministry in upcoming talks with India, she added.

The Commerce Secretaries of the two sides are scheduled to meet in New Delhi later this month.

Khar's comments came against the backdrop of a flip-flop by Pakistan on the MFN issue.

Information minister Firdous Awan announced on Wednesday that the cabinet had approved a move to give India MFN-status while the Foreign Ministry later clarified that both countries would work towards this goal in future engagements.

Khar contended that giving India MFN-status did not amount to a "conferment or a notification or an award".

MFN is an "important component" of the normalisation of bilateral trade relations, she said.

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