Sri Lanka presses Pakistan to lower tariffs

July 10, 2011 (LBO) – Sri Lanka is pressing Pakistan to reduce import duties on key exports from the island with the issue to be taken up again at a forthcoming meeting in Colombo following talks in Islamabad. Pakistan would consider reducing high tariffs imposed on certain Sri Lankan agriculture products, the statement said.

Analysts say that cutting of duties will increase the liberties of Pakistani citizens, especially those not in high income brackets.

Pakistani media reports said Sri Lanka charges high taxes from Pakistani rice.

Pakistani farmers are efficient and produces export grade rice at competitive prices. However Sri Lanka blocks access to cheaper carbohydrates to its poorer citizens in multiple ways. Both sides agreed to reconsider their visa policies especially for business communities to make frequent visits easier and enhance bilateral trade relations at the talks in Islamabad, a ministry of industry and commerce statement said.

The 10th session of the Sri Lanka – Pakistan Joint Economic Commission was held in Islamabad on July 4-5 after a gap of six years with a 14-member delegation led by minister of industry and commerce Rishad Bathiudeen.

The Sri Lankan delegatio