training in sanitary and phytosanitary measures; technical barriers to trade and export of agricultural products. The bilateral free trade agreement is based on the principle of reciprocity and goes beyond the tariff concessions provided for in the SAFTA agreement. Anand Kumar is studying the prospects of a free trade agreement between Pakistan and Bangladesh Nepal imported 54,076 tons of palm oil from July to August and exported 35,706 tons to India during that period, the trade organization said, referring to import data. Distributors use SAFTA to divert palm oil through Bangladesh, Nepal to India. The Solvent Extractors` Association of India (SEA), a leading vegetable oil trade organization, has called on the government to look for ways to stop the indirect purchase of palm oil and soybean oil from Nepal and Bangladesh under the South Asia Free Trade Agreement (SAFTA). The establishment of an Intergovernmental Group (IIG) to develop an agreement for the establishment of a SAPTA by 1997 was approved at the sixth SAARC Summit held in Colombo in December 1991. The two sides reached consensus on a number of issues. Pakistan has agreed to grant special and differential treatment to Bangladesh under the bilateral trade agreement and both countries will have negative lists. Given its status as the least developed country, Bangladesh will benefit from a longer exit period and will benefit from a longer negative list than Pakistan. In addition, there will be two separate schedules, according to which one category of products will benefit from immediate customs concessions and another will withdraw customs duties in phases. There is little trade between Pakistan and Bangladesh and the balance shifts in Pakistan`s favour. Bangladesh imported $68.68 million of goods from Pakistan in the past fiscal year, while exports amounted to $31.5 million, leaving a deficit of $US 37.18 million in favor of Islamabad. In fiscal years 2001-2002, Bangladesh imported $67 million in goods, while exports amounted to $28.6 million.
Some of the main Bangladeshi products entering the Pakistani market include raw jute, jute, tea, leather, agricultural products and chemical items. Bangladesh imports textile and textile products, beverages, tobacco, vegetables, fruits, processed foods and a colourful blend of light products. Pakistan and the United States began negotiating a bilateral investment agreement (BIT) in 2004 and concluded the text in 2012, but the agreement was not signed due to reservations from Pakistani stakeholders. Pakistan has concluded bilateral investment agreements with Australia, Azerbaijan, Mauritius, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Morocco, Belarus, the Netherlands, the Belgian-Luxembourg Economic Union, Oman, the Philippines, Bosnia, Portugal, Bulgaria, Qatar, Cambodia, Romania, China, Singapore, the Czech Republic, South Korea, Denmark, Spain, Egypt, Sri Lanka, France, Sweden, Germany, Switzerland, Indonesia, Syria, Iran, Tajikistan, Italy, Tunisia, Japan, Turkey, Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan, Kuwait, the United Arab Republic, the Kyrgyz Republic, the United Kingdom, Lebanon, Uzbekistan, Laos and Yemen. These investment agreements generally contain dispute settlement provisions. Where a dispute cannot be resolved through mutual consultation, investors can generally initiate arbitration proceedings in accordance with the rules of the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law, the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes of the World Bank or the Arbitral Tribunal of the International Chamber of Commerce. Pakistan is a member of the Multilateral Investment Agency (MIGA), an arm of the World Bank. Pakistan and the United States signed a Trade and Investment Framework Agreement (TIFA) in 2003 that provides a forum for discussing bilateral trade issues. . . .