Islamabad, 11 March 2022 (TDI): At a meeting under the Pakistan United-States Trade and Investment Framework Agreement (TIFA), Pakistan and the United States (US) have agreed to bolster bilateral trade, business administration, and investment. The meeting was held in Islamabad.

Muhammad Sualeh Ahmed Faruqui, Pakistan’s Secretary of Commerce was joined by Christopher Wilson, Assistant US Trade Representative for South and Central Asia.

Both parties discussed a multitude of issues aimed at raising cooperation in the textile, agriculture, and healthcare sectors. They also discussed the promotion of digital trade and e-commerce, while also pushing to foster bilateral trade and investment.

The protection of labor rights was also discussed along with the protection of intellectual property and the economic empowerment of women.

“We succeeded in re-launching the TIFA, we feel quite satisfied, there was a very positive dynamic in the discussion.” -Christopher Wilson, Assistant US Trade representative.

He added that the purpose of his visit to Islamabad was to cover some meetings related to the mechanism of TIFA that the United States had negotiated with Pakistan a few years ago.

This mechanism provides a structure for both governments to engage in investment and trade in the future. He also noted that current discussions were purely related to trade and investment and that there was no politics involved.

There were no discussions on Bilateral Investment Treaty (BIT) but Christopher Wilson expressed the need for both countries to establish such relations.

He added that Pakistan had been a beneficiary of the US generalized system of preferences (GSP) but ever since its expiration, Pakistan had stopped receiving the benefits of the system. The US Congress is currently considering the reauthorization of the GSP program.

Pakistan United-States Trade and Investment Framework Agreement (TIFA)

TIFA is an agreement between the United States and Pakistan concerning the development of trade and investment relationships.

It was signed in 2003 and entered into force the same year. The agreement has greatly cemented the relationship between Pakistan and the United States.