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EU commission maintains Pakistan GSP+ status

Following the European Union’s (EU) decision not to suspend Pakistan’s ‘Generalised Scheme of Preferences plus’ (GSP+), status despite concerns about its human rights record Pakistan’s textile producers will continue to benefit from EU preferential tariffs. GSP+ has been beneficial to Pakistan’s textile industry - textiles and clothing account for around 75 per cent of Pakistan’s exports to the EU. The GSP+ benefits allow 80 per cent of Pakistani textile and clothing imports to enter the EU at preferential tariffs. Items include table and bed linen, as well as many fabric lines and clothing products.

There were concerns that the country could lose its EU trading privileges after the EU ambassador to Pakistan, Jean-Francois Cautain, was quoted last year as saying such a move could not be ruled out. Countries enjoying GSP+ status must comply with 27 international conventions, covering human and labour rights, environmental protection and good governance.