ISLAMABAD: Pakistan and Saudi Arabia have reached consensus on investment modalities, paving the path for ratification of a free trade agreement with the Gulf Cooperation Council.
In a statement on social media platform X on Sunday, Caretaker Minister for Information and Broadcasting Murtaza Solangi said the agreement has been pending for the last 19 years.
He expressed the hope that if approved, this will mark the first trade and investment agreement that the GCC enters into with Pakistan in the past 15 years.
Meanwhile, Minister for Commerce and Industries Dr Gojar Ijaz in a social media post on X said he had productive discussions in Saudi Arabia towards finalizing the investment-related part of Gulf Cooperation Council Free Trade Agreement.
He expressed the confidence that agreement will strengthen economic ties between Pakistan and GCC fostering new opportunities for trade and investment.
Earlier, the Pakistan’s Commerce and Industries Minister, led an official delegation to Saudi Arabia comprising Secretaries of the Ministry of Commerce and Board of Investment (BOI) and officials from the Attorney General’s Office.
He held parleys with the GCC’s Chief Negotiator to finalize the investment-related part of the GCC Free Trade Agreement (FTA), said a press release issued here on Sunday.
The technical teams from the two sides held extensive discussions on the remaining details of the investment chapter, including investment protection and facilitation.
They also discussed the potential impact of the FTA on bilateral trade and investment flows. “This is a major step forward in our efforts to strengthen economic ties between Pakistan and the GCC.” said Ejaz.
The investment chapter is an important part of the agreement, and we are confident that we can reach an agreement soon.
The GCC FTA is expected to boost trade and investment between Pakistan and the GCC.
The agreement is also expected to create new jobs and opportunities for businesses in both regions.
The two sides also discussed the possibility of holding a joint business forum shortly and to promote trade and investment between Pakistan and the GCC.
Mr. Gohar Ejaz thanked the GCC for its warm hospitality.