Turkey is willing to explore SEZs under CPEC

Ambassador of Turkey to Pakistan Ihsan Mustafa Yurdakul Thursday said that his country wanted a sustainable and long-lasting Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with Pakistan to achieve win-win results for both countries.

He said that leadership of Turkey and Pakistan have an objective from FTA that it should boost bilateral trade eventually to $5 billion and hoped that Pakistan would final its list of items for FTA this month for Turkey.

He said this while addressing a business community at Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry. Yurdakul said that Pak-Turkey existing bilateral trade of around $800 million was far from potential keeping in view the fact that common market of both countries was billions of dollars.

Turkish companies have invested around $1.5 billion in Pakistan and more were willing to invest here, he added.

The ambassador said that Pakistan has great potential for FDI and Turkish companies wanted to be the first movers to Pakistan for which Pakistan need to further improve ease of doing business. He stressed that business community of Pakistan should not wait for FTA and make strong efforts to promote trade ties with Turkey.

Speaking about China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), the ambassador said that Turkish investors needed more knowledge and information about all aspects of CPEC including investment potential in its Special Economic Zones and projects to tap all untapped potential in this project.

The ambassador said that Turkey has increased 10-fold trade with Africa which was the second largest continent of the world and urged that Pakistani business community should rediscover Africa for trade and exports.

He said that economic power was moving towards East while Pakistan was a gateway for Asia and wished that Pakistan would emerge as a trade hub in the region, for which it should improve its infrastructure and connectivity.

Yurdakul said that he was a business friendly Ambassador and assured that all genuine businessmen of Pakistan would be facilitated in visas for Turkey.

Speaking at the occasion, Islamabad Chamber of Commerce & Industry, President, Muhammad Ahmed Waheed said that Pakistan and Turkey should sign FTA as early as possible that would increase bilateral trade to US$ 2 billion in a couple of years.

He said that Turkey have achieved good economic growth and stressed that it should share its expertise and technology with Pakistan that would accelerate industrialization, exports and economic growth in Pakistan.

Turkey was generating $35-36 billion revenue annually from tourism while the current Government of Pakistan was determined to promote tourism, he added.

Waheed urged the Turkey to cooperate with Pakistan in developing tourism industry that would bring multiple benefits to our economy.

He said that Turkish investors should explore JVs and investment in CPEC and other sectors of Pakistan’s economy as by investing in Pakistan they could get easy access to Central Asian and other markets.


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