Turkish president’s Pakistan visit to enhance trade relations

Turkish and Pakistani businesspeople are eager to enhance trade and investments, as the two country's leaders attach great importance to the strengthening of economic ties, besides the bond of brotherhood.

Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan will embark on a two-day official visit to Islamabad on Thursday, his fourth since 2002.

"A number of agreements to boost trade relations is expected to be signed during the ," Bahadir Siyez, the deputy chairman of the Foreign Economic Relations Board (DEIK) Turkey-Pakistan Business Council, told Anadolu Agency.

Dual citizenship issue, which had been on the agenda recently, is also expected to be discussed, Siyez noted.

Noting that Erdogan and Pakistani premier will address the Pakistan-Turkey Business and Investment Forum, Siyez said nearly 90 Turkish business people will attend the event.

The current bilateral trade volume is lesser than the actual potential as the two countries' economy complement each other, he underlined.

"Therefore, we hope to increase trade volume two-three folds," Siyes stressed.

The trade volume between Pakistan and Turkey has increased from approximately $600 million to $800 million over the last 5 years.

Siyez highlighted that Pakistan's mining industry has cooperation opportunities as the country does not carry out "efficient" mining, prospecting and extraction works.

"In addition, Turkey expects technology transfer and investment in various fields such as defense industry, tires, pharmaceuticals, chemicals, and textile machinery," Siyez noted.

Pakistan should clear up the bureaucratic issues for foreign investors, he suggested.

"Prime Minister Imran Khan would like to add Turkey to China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) project which will pave the way for rising trade volume," Siyez said, adding that Pakistan will be an important trade hub in the region with its free trade zones.

The CPEC is a multi-billion-dollar project including a network of rail, roads, and gas pipelines to connect China to Pakistan's southwestern deep-sea Gawadar port to provide the shortest route for Chinese goods to reach the Middle East, Africa, and Central Asia.

Erdoğan's visit will focus on increasing bilateral trade and investments through joint ventures, said an official from the Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry.

"The business circles of Pakistan are very keen to explore opportunities where they can interact with the business community of Turkey through the B2B meetings," the official said, requesting anonymity.

Pakistan expects to receive Turkish investment in a number of sectors -- including engineering, chemicals, construction, electrical appliances, machinery and defense sectors, he noted.


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