Pakistan, Egypt vow to bolster bilateral trade ties to new heights

Wednesday, 20 March 2013 00:00 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

APP: President Asif Ali Zardari urged for concerted steps to bolster the existing Pak-Egyptian relationship to new heights on Monday, with focus on their trade and investment ties.  

Zardari said the Government and the people of Pakistan highly valued their relations with their Egyptian brethren. They were eager to translate the full potential of this relationship for the mutual benefit of the two countries.

The President said this during one-on-one meeting with Egyptian President Dr. Mohamed Morsi followed by delegation level talks at Aiwan-e-Sadr on Monday.

Briefing about the two rounds of talks, Spokesperson to the President Senator Farhatullah Babar said that the two leaders held wide-ranging discussions on bilateral, regional and international issues and the situation in the Middle East.

Babar said that the two leaders agreed to hold bilateral summit on biennial basis alternatively in Pakistan and Egypt. The two leaders also agreed to the holding of the 4th session of the Joint Ministerial Commission (JMC) in Islamabad later this year.

The President invited Egyptian investment in key sectors of economy including Infrastructure, energy, mining, textile, real estate and tourism.

He also invited Egyptian investors to avail the huge incentive packages being offered to foreign investors and entrepreneurs for investment in the Special Economic Zones in various parts of the country.

Zardari expressed hope that various MoUs and agreements inked Monday in different fields would give further impetus to the trade and investment ties hence jacking up the current bilateral trade volume from US$ 400 million to new heights.

He also proposed to finalise free trade agreement between the two countries, which he said, would help increase the quantum of bilateral investment.

The two Presidents also witnessed the signing of five Memorandums of Understanding (MoU) and an executive program for further promoting cooperation between the two countries in the fields of postal services, merchant shipping, investment, media cooperation, science and technology and small and medium enterprises development.

The MoUs signed on Monday between the two countries pertains to the cooperation in the field of money orders and international postal services, cooperation in the field of merchant shipping, cooperation between Board of Investment (BOI) of Pakistan and General Authority of Free Zones and Investment (GAFI) of Egypt, cooperation between Middle East News Agency (MENA) and Associated Press of Pakistan(APP) and cooperation between small and medium enterprise development authority of Pakistan and Special Fund for Development (SFD) of Egypt.

Thanking the President for inviting him to visit Pakistan and extending warm hospitality, President Morsi invited President Zardari to visit Egypt.