Feb 2, 2021, 9:46 AM
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Iran, Pakistan hold first ever virtual session of trade talks

Islamabad, Feb 2, IRNA -- In a new phase of economic diplomacy, the Islamic Republic of Iran and Pakistan held an online session of trade talks for the first time, which was attended by top diplomats, commercial experts, chambers of commerce and representatives of various companies.

The opening session of the first round of online trade talks between the two countries was held at the initiative of Iranian Consul General in southern Pakistani city of Karachi.

During the session ambassadors of the two countries, the President of Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI) and the Consul General of Iran delivered speeches.

Iranian Ambassador to Pakistan Seyed Mohammad Ali Hosseini expressing his views said the growth of the knowledge-based economy is one of the blessings of the Islamic Revolution adding developing cooperation with all countries, especially neighboring countries including Pakistan is the principled policy of Iran.

He added the officials of the two countries are working to increase the level of economic relations between the two countries to $ 5 billion, and at the same time the Iranian embassy in Islamabad and its consulates in Pakistan are ready to cooperate and help businessmen to achieve this goal faster.

Welcoming the increase in trade between the two countries, Pakistani Ambassador to Iran Rahim Hayat Qureshi said the religious, cultural and historical closeness of the two countries is so much that it can remove any obstacle to trade relations

"We must work to facilitate trade between the two countries," he said, calling US anti-Iranian sanctions unfair.

He noted the most important problem in the trade relations between the two countries is the lack of banking channel, which I hope will be solved with the determination of the governments of the two countries.

Qureshi said the development of Iran-Pakistan border trade and completion of Iran-Pakistan gas pipeline project are the two main priorities of Prime Minister Imran Khan’s government

He stated Pakistan needs cheap and reliable energy of Iran and therefore the gas pipeline should be operational as soon as possible.

Nasir Hayat Mago, President of Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI) while expressing his personal experience in trading with Iran for many years, expressed dissatisfaction with the current level of trade relations between the two countries and said such initiatives, increase the knowledge of businessmen of the two countries from each other so that we can bring the volume of trade relations to the desired level.

Ahmad Mohammadi, the Consul General of the Islamic Republic of Iran in Karachi, while congratulating the Fajr decade, said after the corona outbreak and limited travel and international exhibitions, the Iranian Consulate General in Karachi quickly introduced new ways, including holding business webinars.

He added today, after four months of coordination and joint efforts, we are witnessing the holding of a virtual meeting to open the first round of Iran-Pakistan trade talks.

Mohammadi added in this round of online negotiations, 32 Iranian companies and about 100 Pakistani companies are scheduled to hold more than 160 virtual negotiation sessions.

He said these companies are all among the knowledge-based companies of Iran and with the support of the Vice President for Science, they will have negotiations in this round.

The second official crossing between Iran and Pakistan was opened in December last year at Rimdan-Gabd with the presence of Iran's Minister of Roads and Urban Development Mohammad Eslami, and Pakistan’s Minister of Defense production Zobaida Jalal and other officials.

In addition, the Pakistani government has put the development of border infrastructure on the agenda, and in the latest move, the Prime Minister of Pakistan has called for speeding up the construction of border markets with Iran and developing a comprehensive solution in this regard.


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