Pakistan is all set to export about 0.1Mt cement to neighboring country India on monthly basis and both the countries are engaged in negotiations to devise a comprehensive mechanism for the export of the commodity.
“We have been in negotiations with Indian officials for cement export to the country,” Federal Minister for Commerce and Textile Industry, Shahazada Alam Monnoo told APP in an exclusive interview on Tuesday.
“The [Pakistan] cement industry can manage export 0.1Mt to the neighboring country,” he remarked.
India has shown willingness to import maximum quantity of cement from Pakistan through sea as well as land routes, he said.
He said, “I had a meeting with India Ambassador to Pakistan on the issue who has shown keenness on his part for cement import from Pakistan.
However, he was of the view that the immediate barrier in the way of export was inadequate transportation facilities for the lucrative trade across the border. He said that both the sides realised the need for improving road transportation facilities for smooth flow of trade.
Due to abolished countervailing duty and additional customs duty on cement imports the Pakistani cement would become competitive in the huge Indian market. Analysts calculate that the landed cost of Pakistani cement in India would be cheap.
It may be recalled that the shortage of cement in the region gained well for Pakistani cement manufacturers, which not only resulted in export of a major quantity, but also brought high export price.