Pakistan to seek individual trade deals with Saudi, UAE, Oman: Razak Dawood
Pakistan will pursue individual trade deals with Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Oman, Adviser to the Prime Minister on Commerce Razak Dawood said.
The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), which includes the mentioned countries along with Qatar, Kuwait and Bahrain, started talks about free trades with Pakistan in 2004. However, since 2015 the free trade has not been implemented.
On Sunday, Dawood told Reuters that the South Asian country intended to begin bilateral trade negotiations with the three Gulf Arab states in the following 6-12 months.
“We feel it is far better to do individual (deals) at the moment rather than with the GCC as a bloc,” he said in Dubai.
A preferential trade agreement often provides preferential access to particular items, such as by lowering or eliminating tariffs.
The talks, according to Dawood, will include a restricted number of items and will not be as comprehensive as a free trade agreement, though they could be expanded over time if they are successful.
He did not specify specific commodities Pakistan would like to include in the deal.
The UAE said earlier this month that it would seek comprehensive trade and investment deals with eight nations, including India, the United Kingdom, and Turkey, but not Pakistan.
Officials from Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, and Oman could not be reached for comment on Dawood’s remarks.
Dawood is in Dubai to examine Pakistan’s preparations for the six-month Expo world fair that will begin there next month.
Pakistan will emphasize safety and diversity at Expo, he said, in the hopes of attracting more tourists and investors to the South Asian country.
New Zealand’s cricket team has withdrawn from an impending visit to Pakistan due to security concerns.
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