Chief Editor: Ansar Mahmood Bhatti

President highlights deep economic links with China, ASEAN

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ISLAMABAD, NOV 27 (DNA) – In his address, the President has said that Pakistan has deep-rooted cultural and economic links with China-ASEAN region and the present Government is deeply committed to further strengthening and diversifying these ties by exploring the feasibility of a China-ASEAN Trade Triangle that would propel three-way cooperation in trade, investment, culture and tourism.

President Alvi also commended the Government of China for effectively overcoming the Covid-19 pandemic and restoring trade and economic activity as testified by the holding of CAEXPO and other trade exhibitions. China, he said, has emerged as economic hub and a strong exponent of free trade and multilateralism as shown by its signing of Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership, which is the world’s largest trade agreement to-date.

Pakistan, he said, has multifaceted economic cooperation with China, including a Free Trade Agreement, which entered its expanded phase II early this year, and the transformative China Pakistan Economic Corridor which has brought great economic benefits to Pakistan and enhanced connectivity in the region.

With completion of infrastructure and energy projects, CPEC has now entered a new phase of greater emphasis on strengthening Pakistan’s industry, agriculture, and socioeconomic sectors. The President also reiterated Pakistan’s commitment to further strengthening trade and economic cooperation with ASEAN states.

Pakistan is pursuing this objective through its sectoral dialogue partnership with ASEAN and membership of ASEAN Regional Forum. Pakistan is now exploring the feasibility of concluding a Free Trade Agreement with ASEAN. The President highlighted the economic reforms of the Government and the resulting macroeconomic stability and a conducive environment for business and foreign investment.

He encouraged investors from China and ASEAN to avail the emerging opportunities of making profitable investments in the Special Economic Zones of Pakistan, which are subject to special supportive policies and attractive tariff and tax concessions for foreign investors.

Pakistan is participating in the 17th CAEXPO as a Special Partner Country for the first time and is making full spectrum representation through country pavilion, commercial display booths and an exclusive trade & investment conference on the sidelines.

President’s video speech was released together with speeches of China ASEAN leaders which included President Xi Jinping of China, Presidents of Indonesia, Myanmar and the Philippines and Prime Ministers of Thailand, Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia. DNA

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