Fourteen projects in power sector have been identified by the energy working group to explore possibilities of cooperation from the Turkish side. Turkey would also provide technical assistance in the field of geothermal energy resources and remote sensing. - File photo

ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan-Turkey Joint Ministerial Commission (JMC) meeting held here on Monday discussed and finalised agreements and MoUs in various fields to be signed by the premiers of both countries on Tuesday.

The MoUs and agreements will be signed in the fields of solid waste management, archives, investment, urbanisation, transport and communications and renewable energy in the High Level Cooperation Council meeting to be held on May 22 co-chaired by the Prime Ministers of both countries.

The 14th Session of Pak-Turkey Joint Ministerial Commission (JMC) held here on Monday was co-chaired by the commerce minister Makhdoom Amin Fahim and Turkish Minister for Environment and Urbanisation Erdogan Bayraktar. It was informed that a Turkish bank would start operations in Pakistan soon while many Turkish banks are interested to open their branches in Karachi, Lahore and Islamabad.

The JMC was also informed that a Turkish company would start business in petroleum sector in Pakistan and all necessary formalities have been completed in this regard.

The JMC noted that the current volume of trade and investment is far below than the potential both the countries have and efforts are needed to improve trade and investment between both countries.

“One basic way to improve trade and commerce between Turkey and Pakistan is to enhance investments and transfer of technology between the two nations,” Amin Fahim said.

The JMC was informed about various proposals to enhance bilateral cooperation in the areas of trade and commerce, energy, banking and finance, railways and communications, culture and tourism, education and other like agriculture, health, science & technology and environment were presented in the meeting.

The commission also reviewed the implementation status of decisions that were taken during 13th Pakistan-Turkey JMC.

The six joint working groups presented their relevant agenda in the meeting. The cultural cooperation working group informed that year 2013-14 would be celebrated as Pakistan-Turkish Cultural Year.

The Energy Working Group highlighted that Turkey has showed interest to provide technical and financial assistance for establishment of small hydro power in Punjab and construction of transmission lines. Turkey will also help in formulation of regulatory framework and safety codes for coal-based power generation.

Fourteen projects in power sector have been identified by the energy working group to explore possibilities of cooperation from the Turkish side. Turkey would also provide technical assistance in the field of geothermal energy resources and remote sensing.

Communications and Railways working group highlighted the potential areas of land roads, maritime communication and railways.

A meeting is scheduled to be held on June 25 for finalisation of Pakistan-Turkey road sector cooperation.

Turkey also showed interest in vessel tracking system and ship repair and building in Pakistan.

Moreover, it was agreed that the existing public sector railway programme between Turkey and Pakistan would be shifted to private sector. Trade and Commerce working group informed the JMC that Preferential Trade Agreement would be further explored as trade would be diversified and investment would be improved by the both countries.

A public awareness programame would be scheduled to accomplish currency swap system between Turkey and Pakistan, mentioned by Trade and Commerce working group.

Later in an another meeting with Mr Amin Fahim, Turkish Minister for Economy Zafer Caglyan said that key reasons for low trade volumes were high taxes, custom duties and matters relating to port and shipping.

Mr Zafer Caglyan, highlighted the investment interest of different Turkish companies for Pakistan and the related requirements they needed from the Pakistani authorities.

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