Iran Seeking Free Trade with Pakistan

Iran’s interior minister stressed the need for achieving a free trade pact with Pakistan, saying closer economic ties between the two neighbors will contribute to sustainable security along the common border.

Speaking to reporters on the sidelines of a meeting of Iran-Pakistan economic cooperation in Tehran on Monday, Abdolreza Rahmani Fazli said a target of the session is to hammer out an agreement on free trade between the two countries.

“We are trying to increase the value of economic and trade exchanges between Iran and Pakistan to five billion dollars,” the minister added.

Pointing to 900 kilometers of joint border between Iran and Pakistan as well as their cultural and religious bonds, Rahmani Fazli said stronger bilateral trade ties will serve sustainable security at the common borders.

His comments came after the Central Bank of Iran (CBI) and the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) signed a Banking and Payment Arrangement (BPA) to streamline trade transactions between the two nations.

In March 2016, Iranian President Rouhani expressed the country’s willingness to enhance relations with Pakistan in all areas, including trade, banking and security.

Speaking in a joint meeting of Iranian and Pakistani business people in Islamabad, Rouhani said Iran is ready to raise the volume of annual trade between the two countries from the current $1 billion to $5 billion.

(Source: Tasnim, under Creative Commons licence)

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