At the recent Belarus-Pakistan Economic Forum held in Islamabad, Ambassador Andrei Metelitsa stressed the burgeoning trade relations between Belarus and Pakistan, underscoring the vast untapped potential for bilateral trade collaboration.

POTENTIAL FOR EXPANSIVE TRADE:

Ambassador Metelitsa shed light on the current state of bilateral trade, revealing that despite the existing trade turnover averaging around $60 million annually, the true potential remains significantly higher. He emphasized the need for concerted efforts to capitalize on the geographical significance of both nations and leverage their economic strengths for mutual benefit.

Highlighting the historical backdrop of diplomatic relations, Ambassador Metelitsa underscored the three-decade-long diplomatic and economic ties between Belarus and Pakistan. With the formal initiation of diplomatic relations on February 3, 2024, both countries embarked on a journey towards deeper economic engagement.

KEY AREAS OF TRADE FOCUS:

The Ambassador outlined the key sectors driving bilateral trade, with a particular emphasis on high-value engineering goods such as tractors and trucks. Belarus’s export portfolio to Pakistan encompasses a diverse range of products including Potassic Fertilizers, Agriculture, Synthetic Filament Tow, Chemicals, and malt extract, while Pakistan reciprocates with exports like House Linens, textiles, rice, Citrus, leather apparel, leather footwear, and medical instruments.

TRADE AGREEMENT PROSPECTS:

While discussions regarding Free Trade Agreements or Preferential Trade Agreements are yet to commence, Ambassador Metelitsa highlighted the potential avenues for future negotiations in this regard, signaling promising prospects for deeper economic integration between Belarus and Pakistan.

FUTURE OUTLOOK:

Looking ahead, the Ambassador expressed optimism about the impending visit of Belarusian President Aleksandr Lukashenko to Pakistan, foreseeing a pivotal moment for initiating trade and economic agreements. Additionally, he emphasized the role of Chambers of Commerce in fostering bilateral ties and facilitating business interactions between the two nations.

FORGING NEW PARTNERSHIPS:

In line with this vision, President of the Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Ahsan Zafar Bakhtawari, announced plans to lead a trade delegation to Belarus, aiming to bolster economic relations and explore new avenues for collaboration. Similarly, initiatives were proposed to facilitate reciprocal visits and exchanges between businessmen from both countries.

STRENGTHENING TRADE TIES:

The significance of enhancing economic connections was emphasised by high-ranking businessmen and delegates from both nations, who also emphasised the critical role played by the private sector in realising the full potential of bilateral trade between Iran and Belarus.

At the end of the discussion at the Belarus-Pakistan Economic Forum, both countries’ dedication to promoting economic cooperation highlights a positive path towards improved trade and mutual prosperity.

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