Dawn News

Talks on early PTA with Turkey

ISLAMABAD, Oct 19: Pakistan and Turkey have decided to expedite efforts for an early conclusion of a comprehensive Preferential Trade Agreement (PTA) that will further boost commercial ties between the two countries.

Board of Investment Chairman Saleem H Mandviwalla, along with Commerce Secretary Munir Qureshi, is currently holding negotiations with the authorities in Turkey to explore possibilities of expanding bilateral trade relations and signing of the PTA.

The Pakistani delegation held extensive discussions with Turkish Deputy Minister for Economy Mustafa Sever and his team.

The Turkish minister informed Mr Mandviwalla that currently Turkish companies have about $365 million investment portfolio in Pakistan.

Both the sides noted that although bilateral trade crossed the threshold of $1 billion last year, concerted efforts are required to keep this momentum.

They agreed that the signing of the PTA would address all issues, including textile sector, according to an information received here.

The BoI chairman said that Pakistan would encourage investment in steel sector and invited steel manufacturers to consider establishing world class steel plants in Pakistan.

The Pakistan delegation also held a meeting with Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Ali Babacan who assured his government’s full support in encouraging the Turkish companies to invest in Pakistan.

Both the sides agreed that goodwill between Turkey and Pakistan would certainly help improve economic relations.

They also discussed the Istanbul-Islamabad cargo goods train (Gul Train).

They referred to High Level Cooperation Council (HLCC) which is a highest level decision making forum between the two countries in the economic field.

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