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Pakistan

Pakistan to Ask China for $ 1 Billion Worth of Export Orders: Razak

ISLAMABAD – Pakistan and China are signing the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) -II when Prime Minister Imran Khan will visit Beijing on April 27 for three days, during the visit he will also participate in the second OBOR forum (One Belt One Road). The much-anticipated FTA-II, once signed, will help Pakistan double its exports to China, said Razak Dawood, the prime minister’s advisor on trade, textiles, and industry said in a exclusive interview with the News said Monday.
“Finance Secretary Younas Dagha and Commerce Secretary Sardar Ahmad Nawaz Sukhera will visit China on April 9, where they will meet with senior Chinese officials on the initial FTA-II agreement. However, on the sidelines of the OBOR Forum, attended by Heads of State and delegates from more than 100 countries, the two countries will sign the Free Trade Agreement II in the presence of Prime Minister Imran Khan and Chinese President Xi Jingping,” he said.
The adviser revealed that Pakistan would also send its request to the highest Chinese officials to obtain a new order of one billion dollars for exports to China under the FTA-II agreement. Another $ 1 billion export order will help Pakistan triple its exports to China.
On November 9, 2018, he said, Beijing had placed an order in Islamabad for a $1 billion export order to the Chinese market. Under the order, Pakistan was to export 300,000 metric tons of sugar, 350,000 tons of rice of $1 billion worth of orders, $300 million of rice and sugar will be exported by June 30, 2019. Nearly 75% of the rice has been shipped and the rest of the lot will be completed by June 30, 2019. However, other lots of sugar and yarns must be completed by December 2019.
Exports to China are currently $1.2 billion, which is expected to grow to $2.4 billion after the signing of the FTA-II, but the goal of the second free trade agreement is to be reached by December 2019 and will be followed by another goal. $1 billion in exports for which Pakistan will also ask China to extend its order at the next visit.
Razak Dawood announced that the delegation of Pakistani experts will soon visit Saudi Arabia to discuss with his counterparts to discuss the technical problems specifications are finalized, it will be easy to help Saudi Arabia to assess the volume of investments needed for the refinery and the petrochemical complex. He hopes that the feasibility study conducted by Saudi experts will be completed in 12 months.
When asked if Pakistan had made efforts to increase its exports to Saudi Arabia, the adviser replied that his Saudi counterpart had made it clear that if Pakistani entrepreneurs were willing to meet the requirements of its tariff regime, it had not changed in 20 years.
It is now up to Pakistani entrepreneurs to break into the Saudi market for their products, considering the Saudi tariff regime and its quality standards.
During Prime Minister Mahatir Mohamad’s visit to Pakistan, the minister said the recent memorandum of understanding with Malaysian companies, worth $900 million, are different because they were signed by private parties. The minister said he was 100% sure that the $ 900 million Memorandum of understanding would be realized and executed.
To a question, the minister dismissed the impression that the government had abandoned the Africa policy, saying that this policy was very effective, with Pakistan currently exporting cement and manufacturing tractors in three African countries: Mozambique, Zambia and Kenya.
“I am very pleased that engineering products such as tractors are exported without any subsidies to the African countries,” said the Minister jubilantly, adding that nearly 10,000 tractors would be exported by June 30, 2019. He said that cement exports in Africa countries has grown. Total cement exports amount to $150 million.
“Cement exports have been diverted to Africa because of the slowdown in construction activity in Pakistan and India’s ban on Pakistani products following the Pulwama incident,” he said.
(Sahar News Monitoring Desk)

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