LAHORE: The United States has pledged to help Pakistan in improving its trade volumes, particularly with the Central Asian republics (CARs) under the US Agency for International Development’s (USAID) Pakistan Regional Economic Integration Activity (PREIA).

Under the PREIA, the Pakistani and Central Asian countries’ business communities are being provided assistance for the promotion of trade, exhibitions and other related activities focusing on enhancement in the bilateral trade among the countries.

“The US supports improving Pakistan’s trade volumes, particularly with Central Asian republics through USAID’s PREIA.

The project assists Pakistani and Central Asian businesses by supporting trade promotion initiatives, organising trade exhibitions and business forums, facilitating bilateral trade deals and partnerships, and increasing awareness of untapped opportunities for trade and investment between countries,” said Acting Consul General Gibilisco after she joined 150 public and private sector representatives from Pakistan and Kyrgyzstan at a jointly organised Trade and Investment Forum in Lahore.

The forum aimed to create opportunities for the business communities of both countries, encourage dialogue on prospects for increasing bilateral trade and investment flows, develop linkages between the public and private sector stakeholders, and introduce new business and investment opportunities that can lead to the socioeconomic uplift of both countries.

“This year marks 75 years of US-Pakistan bilateral relations. During this time, our partnership has grown in many areas, and we look forward to building on our successes and expanding trade and investment ties and opportunities within the region,” noted Consul General Gibilisco.

The Forum was jointly organised by USAID, Pakistan Regional Economic Integration Activity (PREIA), the Ministry of Commerce, Trade Development Authority of Pakistan (TDAP), and the Embassy of the Kyrgyz Republic in Pakistan. Kyrgz Ambassador to Pakistan Totuiaev Ulanbek Asankulovich, and Director General TDAP Shahzad Ahmed Khan Rajput represented their respective countries.

A 45-member delegation from Kyrgyz Republic visited Pakistan from April 19 to 22 to participate in two trade and investment forums in Islamabad and Lahore.

The keynote remarks of the participants underscored the importance of utilising the geostrategic locations of Pakistan and Kyrgyz Republic to bolster economic ties within the region.

Published in Dawn, April 23rd, 2022

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