Islamabad : Commerce Ministry on Friday thanked the European Parliament for voting to approve draft legislation for new EU scheme for Generalized System of Preferences GSP which will replace current GSP scheme from January 2014.
Pakistan was last given concessionary access to the European market in 2002 which lasted for three years. Since then, it has been pleading case with European Union EU for similar arrangement.
Under new scheme some of existing criteria for GSP Plus beneficiaries have also been changed. Most significantly as per new criteria a country will be eligible for GSP Plus only if its GSP covered exports to EU account for less than 2% of EU s total GSP imports, instead of 1% applied today, official handout said.
This increase in criteria from 1% to 2% will make Pakistan and a few other countries eligible to apply for GSP Plus, provided they fulfill other criteria such as commitment to effectively implement 27 International conventions relating to good governance, human rights and sustainable development etc. In case Pakistan is able to meet all criteria for GSP Plus, its exports to the EU under concessionary tariff lines will receive duty free treatment from 2014 onwards.