Islamabad, In a move towards enhancing economic cooperation and bilateral trade, Pakistan’s Minister of Commerce and Industry, Dr. Gohar Ejaz, engaged in a Zoom meeting with the Minister of Trade and Integration of the Republic of Kazakhstan, Shakkaliyev Arman. The virtual meeting served as a platform for both nations to explore opportunities for a mutually beneficial partnership and to foster greater economic collaboration.
Minister Shakkaliyev Arman began the discussions by highlighting the deep-rooted friendship and the untapped potential for trade between Kazakhstan and Pakistan. He emphasized the need for expanding cooperation in various sectors and increasing the trade volume between the two nations. Minister Arman expressed particular interest in exploring trade opportunities in agricultural products and the potential for transit trade and logistics through Pakistani ports of Gwadar and Karachi, facilitating access to South Asian markets.
Dr. Gohar Ejaz, Pakistan’s Minister of Commerce and Industry, reciprocated the enthusiasm for closer economic ties, acknowledging Kazakhstan’s remarkable progress as a regional player. He lauded Kazakhstan’s progress as it’s GDP has reached $250 billion and international trade stands at $150 billion.
Minister Ejaz stated, “While Pakistan’s international trade stands at $100 billion, with a GDP of $350 billion, our mutual trade with Kazakhstan stands at a mere $100 million. Our vision is to increase exports by $100 billion in five years, and we welcome Kazakhstan to be part of this journey.” Dr. Ejaz announced a target of $1 billion in trade with Kazakhstan and highlighted Pakistan’s capacity to bring substantial value to Kazakhstan through its huge market for energy, industry and small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).
Minister Ejaz extended a warm invitation to Minister Shakkaliyev Arman and business delegates from Kazakhstan to visit Pakistan and explore investment opportunities. He expressed readiness to provide access to Pakistani ports and collaborate in sectors such as steel production. Dr. Ejaz also encouraged Kazakhstan to invest in value addition of its natural resources within Pakistan’s special economic zones.
The meeting concluded with Minister Shakkaliyev Arman expressing his readiness to visit Pakistan with a delegation of business representatives, emphasizing the commitment to strengthen trade relations between the two nations. Both ministers displayed a strong commitment to unlocking the full potential of their bilateral trade and fostering mutually beneficial collaborations.