Islamabad, Feb 5 (IANS) Pakistani traders Saturday urged the governments of India and Pakistan to shun differences and boost economic activities.
Pakistani traders participated Saturday in celebrating Kashmir solidarity day and expressed concern that differences between the two neighbours are pulling them backwards, Aaj TV reported.
“It is the only instance in the world where trade is allowed but only for two days in a week,” Zulfiqar Abbasi of Kashmir Chamber of Commerce in Muzaffarabad was quoted as saying.
The differences have resulted in poverty and unemployment in the valley on both sides “and we certainly need to go beyond that”, he said.
Mirza Ikhtiyar Baig, the adviser to Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani and a leading industrialist, said: “There is certainly a need to expand the list of items in which trade is allowed through the LoC.”
“We know that there is unexploited potential and are looking into possibilities in this regard”, he added.
Trade in 21 agreed items, including Kashmiri embroidery, dry and fresh fruits and wooden furniture, opened along the LoC Oct 21, 2008 as part of confidence-building measures between India and Pakistan.
The current volume of trade across the LoC stands at around Rs.2 billion annually.