India will allow duty-free imports from Afghanistan over a five-year period, giving almost all products from that country zero-duty access to the Indian market.
The scheme will be implemented over a period of five years through 20-per cent tariff reduction on the current applied rates each year.
This is part of the government's economic package for least developed countries (LDCs), a notification issued by the finance ministry said.
The preferential duty scheme for LDCs - Duty-Free Tariff Preference (DFTP) scheme - announced by the prime minister in 2008, covers over 90 per cent of goods exported from LDCs and nearly 85 per cent of India's total tariff line.
Some of the items in the duty-free list of imports include cotton, cocoa, aluminium ore, copper ore, cashewnut, cane sugar, readymade garments, fish fillets and non-industrial diamonds, which would have an impact on domestic prices of these products.
Besides Afghanistan, India has extended the duty-free tariff preference scheme to other LDC countries such as Cambodia, Tanzania, Uganda, Rwanda and Madagascar as well.