Some amount of trade with Pakistan going on through air, sea routes: Govt

The government on Wednesday said some amount of trade with Pakistan is being conducted through land and sea routes but all business through the land border has been stopped by the neighbouring country "unilaterally".
India - Pakistan trade
India - Pakistan trade

New Delhi | The government on Wednesday said some amount of trade with Pakistan is being conducted through land and sea routes but all business through the land border has been stopped by the neighbouring country "unilaterally".

Union Minister of State for Commerce and Industry Anupriya Patel also said in Lok Sabha that it is the responsibility of Pakistan to allow transit of Indian goods to Central Asian countries through its territory. Patel said earlier whatever trade had happened, everything was done through Attari-Wagah border and through Karachi port.

"Now, no trade is being done through land route. But some trade is being done through sea and air," she said.

The minister said this trade through sea and air routes with Pakistan is being done through the Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust, Inland Container Depot, Tughlakabad, Mundra SEZ, Air Cargo Complex Mumbaiand Air Cargo Complex Hyderabad among others.

Replying to a question on the possibility of trade with Central Asian countries, she said: "We have not stopped trade with Pakistan. With regard to trade with Central Asia, any of our trade transaction arrangement has to be through Pakistan. So, it is the responsibility of Pakistan to open the trade route". Patel said the suspension of trade was "imposed unilaterally" by Pakistan, not by India.

"So responsibility lies with Pakistan as transit will have to take place through their territory," she said.

In 2019, Pakistan suspended bilateral trade with India and expelled its High Commissioner in Islamabad after New Delhi abrogated Article 370 that granted special status to Jammu and Kashmir.

India has been maintaining that it desires normal neighbourly relations with Pakistan while insisting that the onus is on Islamabad to create an environment that is free from terror and hostility for such an engagement.

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