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PM urges businessmen to boost Pak-Turk trade to $5b


ANKARA:

Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif urged the business community of Pakistan and Turkey on Tuesday to take the two-way trade to the $5 billion within next three years, assuring that his government would provide all-out support in this regard.

Addressing a dinner reception hosted by the President of the Union of Chambers and Commodity Exchanges of Turkey (TOBB) Riffat Hisarciklioglu after arriving on Ankara on a three-day official visit to Turkey, Shehbaz invited Turkish entrepreneurs to come to Pakistan.

“My investors are my masters. Come to Pakistan. We will genuinely roll out the red carpet for them,” Shehbaz said. “The $1.1 billion trade is nothing… Let us resolve to take the two-way trade to $5 billion… Let us do it speedily. The time and tide wait for none,” he added.

A huge number of businessmen from the Turkey-Pakistan Business Forum, Turkish and Pakistani investors and officials from the respective boards of investment attended the event. Shehbaz assured the Turkish investors that they would face no hurdles in Pakistan.

Shehbaz assured the participants that the government had done away with all the impediments to the business sector and urged the Turkish investors to invest their capital in multiple sectors like agriculture, information technology, dairy, textile, and many other fields.

He said under the leadership of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Turkey had achieved tremendous progress with its companies executing gigantic projects in multiple fields, including dams and infrastructure building across the globe.

He thanked the Turkish people and the leadership for supporting Pakistan during the earthquake and floods, besides showing its unwavering support for the Kashmir cause. The prime minister also reiterated Pakistan’s stance to support Turkey on the Cyprus issue.

The prime minister is on his maiden visit to Turkey, since assuming the office on April 11, this year. Earlier, Shehbaz arrived in Ankara on Tuesday evening to a warm welcome. At Ankara Esenboga Airport, he was warmly received by Turkish Defence Minister Hulusi Akar and senior government functionaries. A smartly turned-out contingent of the Turkish Army presented salute.

Shebaz is accompanied by a high-level delegation, including Defence Minister Khawaja Asif, Information Minister Marriyum Aurangzeb, Investment Board Minister Chaudhry Salik Hussain and special assistants Tariq Fatemi and Fahad Hussain. Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari will join the entourage later. During his visit, the prime minister will have a tete-a-tete with President Erdogan, before the delegation-level talks. The two leaders will jointly unveil a logo, marking the 75th anniversary of the establishment of the bilateral diplomatic relations. He will also attend the Pakistan-Turkey Business Council Forum.

Before his departure for Turkey, the prime minister tweeted that time had come for both the countries to further leverage on their excellent bonds to upgrade the bilateral ties as era of regional connectivity and shared development called for fresh approach.

“Departing for visit to Turkey. Time has come for Pakistan & Turkey to leverage their excellent bonds to upgrade bilateral ties. Era of regional connectivity, shared development & common destiny calls for a fresh approach. Look forward to discussing this with my brother Recep Tayyip Erdogan,” he tweeted.

 

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