India's trade minister puts off Pakistan trip

NEW DELHI Tue Feb 11, 2014 3:07am EST

India's Trade Minister Anand Sharma walks to a meeting at the ninth World Trade Organization (WTO) Ministerial Conference in Nusa Dua, on the Indonesian resort island of Bali December 7, 2013. REUTERS/Edgar Su

India's Trade Minister Anand Sharma walks to a meeting at the ninth World Trade Organization (WTO) Ministerial Conference in Nusa Dua, on the Indonesian resort island of Bali December 7, 2013.

Credit: Reuters/Edgar Su

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NEW DELHI (Reuters) - India's trade minister has put off a visit to Pakistan to expand commercial ties as the two countries make slow progress on resolving key issues that have kept trade between the neighbors far below potential.

Trade Minister Anand Sharma was due to travel to Pakistan this week to build on talks last month when the two sides agreed to increase the movement of trucks and containers at their main border crossing.

Sharma had deferred the trip, trade secretary Rajeev Kher told reporters. He didn't give a reason, but officials have in the past said that India wanted Pakistan to formally announce grant of Most Favoured Nation status that it had agreed to years ago.

(Reporting by Rajesh Kumar Singh and Mnoj Kumar; Writing by Sanjeev Miglani)

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