Pakistan and the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) have wrapped up their negotiations and signed a preliminary free trade agreement (FTA) in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, the Ministry of Commerce told on Friday.
The signing took place between Dr. Gohar Ejaz, Pakistan’s Interim Minister for Commerce, and H.E. Jasem Mohamed Albudaiwi, the Secretary-General of GCC. This FTA marks a milestone in economic cooperation, as it is the first agreement of its kind that the GCC has entered into with any country since 2009.
Both parties expressed their commitment to strengthening trade relations and economic cooperation. Pakistan has traditionally enjoyed good relations with the GCC countries, and this agreement is expected to further solidify these ties.
“Pakistan has excellent relations with all the countries of the GCC and the FTA will ensure that our economic ties are commensurate with these relations,” Ejaz said while speaking on the occasion.
The GCC secretary general said the preliminary deal was a recognition of the importance of strengthening trade relations and economic cooperation with countries and international blocs.
Before the agreement becomes official, an internal administrative and approval process will be carried out in both Pakistan and the GCC nations. The joint statement emphasizes that this FTA will usher in a new era of economic relations between Pakistan and the GCC countries, promising positive impacts on trade and economic activities.