HomeDiplomatic NewsDiplomacyDeputy Prime Minister Dar invites Chinese investors to Pakistan

Deputy Prime Minister Dar invites Chinese investors to Pakistan

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Islamabad, 16 May 2024 (TDI): Deputy Prime Minister Ishaq Dar invited Chinese entrepreneurs to establish labor-intensive industries in Pakistan, as Islamabad seeks foreign investment to bolster its fragile $350 billion economy.

Dar arrived in Beijing on May 13 to co-chair the fifth round of the China-Pakistan Foreign Ministers’ Strategic Dialogue with his counterpart Wang Yi.

The deputy prime minister undertook the visit to bolster relations with China, assure Beijing that Pakistan would enhance the security of Chinese nationals, and hold key meetings with business officials and entrepreneurs there.

https://x.com/foreignofficepk/status/1791031724966813803?s=46

“Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Ishaq Dar has invited Chinese entrepreneurs to take advantage of the investment-friendly policies and set up labor-intensive industry in Pakistan,” Radio Pakistan reported.

Dar made these comments during his keynote address at the Pakistan-China Roundtable Conference in Beijing.

The deputy prime minister said Islamabad had expedited the construction of special economic zones in the country and offered “attractive incentives” to establish different industrial units in the country.

“He said the government has worked out 13 key areas having great potential for Chinese and Pakistani entrepreneurs to establish industry on ownership basis or through joint venture with Pakistani business people,” the state-run media said.

Separately, the minister met Wu Fulin, chairman of China’s EXIM Bank to discuss its long-standing cooperation with Pakistan and the bank’s interest in conducting future investments in the South Asian country.

“Ishaq Dar particularly noted the stellar performance of the Pakistan Stock Exchange and renewed confidence of international investors in Pakistan’s economy,” Radio Pakistan said.

Dar invited the bank to explore new financing projects in Pakistan in renewable energy, agriculture, industrialization, and industrial sectors.

Beijing has been one of Islamabad’s most reliable foreign partners in recent years, readily providing financial assistance to bail out its often-struggling neighbor.

China Grants Rollover

In July last year, China granted Pakistan a two-year rollover on a $2.4 billion loan, giving the debt-saddled nation much-needed breathing space as it tackled a balance-of-payments crisis.

Also read: Fifth round of Pakistan, China Foreign Ministers Strategic Dialogue

China has invested over $65 billion in energy and infrastructure projects as part of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).

The project is part of President Xi Jinping’s ambitious Belt and Road Initiative. CPEC is designed to provide China with a shorter and safer trading route to the Middle East and beyond through Pakistan.

Dar’s visit comes amid Pakistan’s recent push for foreign investment, with Islamabad seeing a flurry of high-level exchanges from diplomats and business delegations in recent weeks from Saudi Arabia, Japan, Azerbaijan, Qatar, and other countries.

Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif has vowed to rid the country of its chronic macroeconomic crisis through foreign investment and efficient handling of the economy.

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