President FPCCI urges need to complete IP at earliest

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India to lose more if trade halts between two countries: Jawad

ISLAMABAD, Sep 20 (APP): President of the Federation of Pakistan Chamber of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI) Abdul Rauf Alam has urged the government to construct its portion of 785 km of Iran-Pakistan (IP) pipeline as soon as possible.

In an interview IRNA, he said that completion of the project would help boosting bilateral trade volume which is currently very low between the two capitals.

Things between Iran and Pakistan were moving in a right direction and law and order situation could be improved, he added.

“Of course the main problem is the banking channel but the private sectors of both the countries are serious in doing the business,” he noted.

The official noted that during to his recent meeting with Iran’s Ambassador to Pakistan Mehdi Honardoost discussed resumption of banking channel between Iran and Pakistan.

He said believing that after resumption of banking channel between Iran and Pakistan, bilateral trade volume would increase and there would be a drastic change.

“The Iranian government is trying hard to remove all the barriers in this regards,” Alam stressed.

He said the proposed Free Trade Agreement (FTA) between Iran and Pakistan would definitely help improve bilateral trade.

FPCCI president said that the five billion dollars trade volume was quite reasonable and could be achieved if both the countries were serious.

Alam said that in the future, Pakistan’s community could go to Chabahar to invest but at  the moment there was no such plan.

Commenting on the upcoming Pakistan-Iran Joint Economic Commission meeting to be hosted by Tehran, he said resumption of banking channel, removing trade barriers and
completion of the IP would remain the main areas to be discussed in the meeting of the next Joint Economic Commission.

“Iran and Pakistan should pave the ground for trade and the FTA should take place immediately,” he said.

Pointing to severe energy crisis in Pakistan, he said that we did not have any better choice than Iran to import electricity.