Pakistan Turkey Business Forum 2015 to be held to enhance bilateral trade and investment

YarnsandFibers News Bureau 2015-02-16 12:00:00 – Islamabad

Pakistan Turkey Business Forum 2015 to be held on February 17 in Pakistan to enhance bilateral trade and investment between the two countries. Around 15 Turkish private companies will accompany Turkish Prime Minister Ahmed Davutoglu to participate in the Business Forum.

Board of Investment (BOI) Chairman Dr Miftah Ismail said that it will be the third meeting of Pakistan Turkey Business Forum since the Pakistan Muslim League-N government came into power. Prime Ministers of both the countries would attend the forum.

Sources said that the decisions on preferential trade agreement (PTA) between Pakistan and Turkey will also be held on the sidelines of the business forum. Turkey has expressed its willingness to sign the much-awaited PTA with Pakistan as it has no outstanding issues to settle.

Turkey has been imposing an anti-dumping tariff on textile products from many countries, including Pakistan, since 2011 in order to prevent unfair pricing. As a result, the bilateral trade volume between Turkey and Pakistan decreased from $2 billion in 2010 to $1 billion in 2011 and to $726 million in 2013.

Private companies, especially from Turkish energy and construction sector are going to be part of the delegation Sources said that the dispute between the government of Pakistan and leading Turkish energy company, Karkey Karadeniz, would also come under discussion during the upcoming meeting of the two prime ministers.

Karkey is seeking compensation from Pakistan for breach of Pakistan's obligations under the BIT in connection with Karkey's investment in a rental power project (RPP) in Karachi, as well as for loss of earnings and costs associated with Pakistan's detention of its ship. The dispute has escalated to the highest levels of the government and was discussed during the recent visit to Turkey of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif.

Dr Miftah Ismail said that the government was trying to find an amicable solution of the dispute as it was sending a negative signal to foreign investors not only in Turkey but other mega international companies. The government of Pakistan's Cabinet Committee of Economic Co-ordination Committee (ECC) had offered to commission seven out of 10 RPPs which were exonerated by the National Accountability Bureau (NAB). Karkey Company was not exonerated by the NAB.

However, in Pakistan, Turkey has already been working with the Punjab provincial government. Turkey is co-operating in different energy projects which will help Pakistan textile industry which is facing energy crisis affecting export growth.

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