The report titled 'India-Pakistan: Trade Perception Survey' said that the chambers of commerce and the governments of both the sides should disseminate policies governing trade to increase awareness among businesses.
     
"Visa regime needs to be improved. Measures that would ensure no city-specific visas, exemption from police reporting, and multiple entry visas need to be undertaken," it said.
    
The report suggested to increasing the number of exhibitions besides improvement of communication channels particularly use of mobile phones in each other’s territory.
    
It has recommended that as traders in both the countries find it difficult to identify new trading partners, encouraging interaction of traders via a web portal could prove to be mutually beneficial for both the countries.
    
"Information on regulatory regimes related to meeting product standards should be made easily available to traders.

As India and Pakistan are members of the International Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation, effort should be made to set up mechanisms whereby there is acceptance of each country’s test certificates," it said.
    
To deal with logistical issues, it said that large logistics service providers with the requisite expertise, particularly from the private sector should be encouraged to provide these services.
    
"Random security checks should be carried out on import consignments coming into India and availability of rail wagons needs to be improved," it added.
    
Further it asked to enhance infrastructure at sea, road and rail customs stations.
    
These suggestions assume significance on account of major findings of the survey which said that "obtaining visas and communicating with counterparts is far more difficult for Pakistani businessmen than for Indian respondents".
    
It has also found that awareness in Pakistan was much lower about the items permitted for imports into India.
    
"Pakistani traders find it difficult to meet standards laid down by Indian authorities on agricultural products.

Pakistani traders perceive that they have low market access into the Indian market indicating that there is a large untapped potential," it said.
     
It said that customs efficiency in terms of processing time of documents, time taken for lab testing and checks for security was seen to be the worst at the Land Customs Station compared to sea and air ports in India.
     
"Overall infrastructure at the sea ports was perceived to be the worst compared to that at other ports in both India and Pakistan," it added.

(Agencies)

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