Prime Minister Narendra Modi will chair a meeting on Thursday to review the ‘Most Favoured Nation’ status India granted to Pakistan in 1996, in response to the September 18 Uri attack in Jammu and Kashmir in which 18 soldiers died. Officials from the Ministry of External Affairs and Commerce Ministry are likely to attend the meeting.
Earlier this week, PM Modi had called a meeting with senior officials from the Ministry of External Affairs and the Ministry of Commerce and Industry to weigh India’s options on trade-related relations with Pakistan. The decision to review the MFN status comes close on the heels of a meeting called by the Prime Minister on the Indus Waters Treaty. At the meeting, PM Modi had said, “Blood and water cannot flow together”, alluding to the recent Uri attacks in Jammu and Kashmir.
Contrary to what the name suggests, the MFN status does not grant any special treatment to Pakistan. Technically, by granting MFN status to Pakistan, India is committed to treat Pakistan the same way it would treat every other WTO member country in relation to the tariff being imposed on goods. On the other hand, Pakistan has not granted the MFN status to India and this issue has been raised on numerous occasion during bilateral discussion between the two countries.
(With inputs from ANI)