At last Thursday’s meeting of Pakistan’s National Assembly, the Government of Pakistan announced plans to apply for status as a Least Developed Country (LDC) in 2013. The announcement was made by Makhdoom Shahabuddin, the Minister of Textile Industry.
Imports from countries with LDC status are duty-free in the EU, Canada, the Czech Republic, Hungary, New Zealand, Norway, the Slovak Republic, and Switzerland. In his announcement, Mr. Shahabuddin said that LDC status will attract entrepreneurs to Pakistan, as the status has recently attracted investors to Bangladesh.
Noting that even Pakistani textile firms have opened branches in Bangladesh to take advantage of the country’s duty-free status, Mr. Shahabuddin outlined recent government activities designed to support the Pakistani textile industry, and to encourage Pakistani textile firms to keep their businesses domestic.
According to the announcement, the Pakistani Government plans to receive LDC status by 2014.