China has pledged to boost Pakistan’s economy and further enhance bilateral economic relation
Arriving in Pakistan on September 7, 2018 for a three-day official visit, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi pledged that Beijing will support Pakistan in developing its industrial sector, as well as increasing exports to China.”China will give a lot of sustenance to encourage imports from Pakistan… We have decided to strive for a greater balance in two-way trade. China will earmark amounts of subsidiaries to encourage imports from Pakistan and will send more (trade coordination) teams to Pakistan. We will also broaden the market access to Pakistan’s competitive agricultural products.” He further said that the two sides will work to complete negotiations to put in place the second phase of the 2006 Free Trade Agreement (FTA) by the end of 2018 to further enhance the level of trade between the two countries.
This is a welcome step on the part of the Chinese government to ensure that China will broaden market access to Pakistan’s competitive agricultural products. This will help in bridging the trade and current account deficit along with addressing the concerns of Pakistan with regards to the FTA, which the government officials and business community have repeatedly asked to be reviewed.