Pakistan signs another agreement with China on industrial Cooperation
An agreement between Pakistan and China has been signed to expand industrial cooperation in various fields and attract investment in special economic zones.
Two sides signed the agreement at the eight meeting of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) Joint Coordination Committee (JCC), held in Beijing. Pakistan and China are working together for Industrial Cooperation.
The meeting was co-chaired by the Federal Minister for Planning MakhdumKhusroBakhtyarand the Vice Chairman of the Chinese National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) NingJizhe.
Officials who were present at the meeting:
Representatives of other provincial governments including Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah, Board of Investment chairman Haroon Sharif, and officials from both countries were present at the meeting.
Details from the meeting:
According to reports, ties between two sides will be improved and enhanced in the field of textiles, petrochemicals, iron, mines, and minerals.
The minister for planning said that cooperation in the industrial sector will encourage relocation of Chinese industry and would attract investment in special economic zones.
Talks on the next phase of CPEC:
Appreciating the progress made in the first phase of the CPEC, the federal minister said:
“Under the clear vision set by our leadership, the stage is now set to move to the next level where the cooperation can be expanded to more trade and industrial cooperation, socio-economic development, agriculture, people-to-people interaction, and knowledge sharing.”
Agreements between both sides:
Both China and Pakistan agreed to collaborate import development, maritime and automobile sectors in the next phase of the CPEC).
Officials from both countries showed a willingness to accelerate work on all projects, including Gwadar. They also talked about promoting joint ventures and industrial relocation from China to harness Pakistan’s export potential.
The Joint Working Group between Pakistan and China:
A Joint Working Group on socioeconomic cooperation has been recently established between Pakistan and China. Both sides held the first meeting of the Joint Working Group. A detailed action plan was discussed for future cooperation in six areas such as:
- Poverty alleviation
- Skill development
- Water supply
- Vocational training projects
The Vice Chairman of the NDRC, NingJizhe, called the visit of Prime Minister Imran Khan to China as ‘Phenomenal Success’.
Mr. Ning expressed confidence saying that the Pak-China relationship will continue to grow and prosper.
Other countries also interested in investing:
After the positive progress made in the CPEC, many countries and foreign companies are also willing to invest in Pakistan as CPEC has opened doors for the investment in Pakistan.
Saudi Arabia to set up an oil refinery in Gwadar:
Saudi Arabia has shown commitment to further make investments in the energy sector and agreed to set up a major oil refinery at Gwadar. In this regard, the Saudi minister for energy is expected to visit Pakistan next month.
Saudi government agreed to invest around $5 – $8 billion in the refinery. It will have a capacity of 0.4 million barrels per day to meet the growing demand of Pakistan and China.
Approval from the Federal cabinet:
The Federal Cabinet held a meeting to discuss the offer came from Saudi Arabia. The cabinet is expected to approve the agreement soon. After the final decisions, the Saudi’s energy minister will visit Pakistan to formally sign the deal with Pakistan.
The acquisition of land for setting up the refinery has almost been completed. In October a high-powered delegation from Saudi Arabia had visited Pakistan and traveled to the proposed site of the refinery.
The United Kingdom showing a positive attitude toward investing:
In an interaction with media, UK is investing in Pakistan for the long-term. The bilateral ties between UK and Pakistan in 2017 were £2.9 billion in goods and services.
A big announcement about the British Airways coming to Pakistan serves as a big boost and showcases Pakistan as a trading destination.
What does the UK Deputy High Commissioner say?
Earlier, UK Deputy High Commissioner and Trade Director Elin Burns said that CPEC is potentially transformational for Pakistan and we are also interested to participate in the opportunities it offers.
“We want to be a trading partner of a successful, thriving Pakistan 20 years from now,” she said.
In the post-Brexit scenario, the trade envoy said a framework similar to the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP+) scheme will be introduced.
It is important that Pakistan continues to make progress on its international obligations in order to retain its EU GSP+ status, she said.
United Kingdom – Pakistan’s largest export market:
United Kingdom is Pakistan’s largest export market in Europe and the second largest globally ahead of China and after the US.
The trade envoy mentioned that she wants to introduce superior quality Pakistani mangoes to the UK markets.
INTERESTING – UK demands for Pakistani Mangoes:
She said that the Pakistani mangoes taste so different from the mangoes sold in the supermarkets there. It would be great to see Pakistani mangoes available in the UK. She added.
Assistance from the United Arab Emirates:
The UAE has agreed to give USD 3 billion to cash-strapped Pakistan that would support Pakistan in its financial and monetary policies.
The transfer of USD 3 billion by the government-owned Abu Dhabi Fund for Development (ADFD) to State Bank of Pakistan is expected to be carried out soon.
The Prime Minister Imran Khan earlier this month has said that huge foreign investment is pouring into Pakistan. He said that all these investments are owing to the country’s geo-strategic position, business-friendly policies and the government’s anti-corruption efforts.
Measures to resolve economic issues:
The government is currently taking four measures to resolve the current economic situation.
The government is planning to extend all-out support to exporters to enhance the exports in the country and help bridge the current account deficit.
The overseas Pakistanis are being given incentives to send remittances through banking channels. It could increase the volume by $10 billion.
The government is striving to attract foreign investment.
The government is getting hard on money laundering and would make legislation that would clamp down the perpetrators
The government is trying to bring down the current account deficit and the friendly countries; China, Saudi Arabia, and UAE had given a good response to Pakistan to handle the situation.