In new FTA, China extends zero rate access to more goods

The Chinese govt. has finally offered Pakistan market access similar to that offered to ASEAN countries after 7 years of negotiations. According to Secretary Finance Mohammad Younus Dagha, the Chinese govt. has agreed to immediately reduce duties to 0% on 313 tariff lines. The final agreement will be signed by commerce ministers of the two countries during PM Imran Khan’s visit to China in end-Apr’19.  The Chinese have also agreed to allow Pakistan to protect 25% of its total tariff lines from duty reduction under the 2nd phase as Pakistan will reduce duty to 0% on 75% of total tariff lines in 15 years, while China will do the same in a period of 10 years. During this period, China will reduce duty to 0% on around 2,000 -2,500 tariff lines for Pakistan. The FTA between China and Pakistan covers nearly 7,000 tariff lines at the 8-digit level of the HS code. Both sides had reduced tariffs on almost 36% of the tariff lines to zero during first 3 years of PCFTA’s Phase-1.