ISLAMABAD: Pakistan and Turkey on Friday signed a ‘Trade in Goods Agreement’ under which both countries will get concessions on the trade of a number of goods and aim to increase bilateral trade.
Pakistani Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif in May visited Turkey where he expressed his resolve to take bilateral trade between the two countries to $5 billion in the next three years. The leadership of the two countries had also agreed then to speed up the process to finalize the Trade in Goods Agreement.
Pakistan’s minister for commerce Naveed Qamar and Turkish trade minister Mehmet Mus signed the new deal in Islamabad.
Sharif, while addressing the signing agreement, said the agreement had been under discussion for many years and would now open “vistas of opportunities” for both countries.
“Our potential is unlimited, our capacity is beyond anybody’s imagination and commitment is outstanding,” Sharif said. “Let’s now resolve to implement this agreement in letter and spirit and let the world know that we mean business.”
“This Agreement will be pivotal in achieving the initial trade target of $5 billion. There is an unlimited potential for bilateral trade,” Sharif later said in tweet.
Turkish trade minister Mus called the agreement an important milestone in bilateral ties.
“I strongly believe that this agreement will serve the expansion of our bilateral trade and will be most important tool to catch our 5 billion US dollar [bilateral] trade volume [target] set by our leaders,” Mus said.
The Pakistani commerce minister said under the new agreement, both countries had granted concessions to each other on a number of trading lines.
“I must say that we are grateful that our brothers from Turkey have given us concessions in 231 lines and Pakistan has given concession in 130 lines,” Qamar said.
The agreement will give Pakistani exporters access in Turkey covering both the agriculture and industrial sectors, said Pakistan’s Ministry of Commerce. It added that Pakistani exporters will have market access in rice, leather, dates, mangoes, cutlery and sports goods sectors.
“In addition, exporters will also have market access in many non-traditional sectors such as tyres, fans, batteries, glass, ceramics, plastics, fisheries, processed agriculture, razors, furniture and base metals.,” the commerce ministry said.
The ministry added that the agreement will provide Pakistani exporters with better market access compared to regional competitors.