Despite the fact that long-time enemies India and Pakistan are already embroiled in a litany of land and maritime conflicts, exporters from both countries have agreed to share ownership of the region’s famous Basmati rice, the best way to reach EU markets.
India has applied to the European Union for a geographical indication tag for Basmati rice, a move that is being contested by Pakistan, which has also applied for a protected geographical designation.
Exporters from Pakistan and India, on the other hand, believe that joint ownership of Basmati is the only way to resolve the problem.
“There has to be joint ownership, which is a logical solution to the dispute,” Faizan Ali Ghouri, a Karachi-based rice exporter.
The origins of Basmati rice, which is predominantly produced in both countries, have long been claimed by New Delhi and Islamabad.
The Punjab province, which was divided into East Punjab (India) and West Punjab (Pakistan) in 1947, is the Basmati rice’s origin.