Islamabad, 1 June 2022 (TDI): Uzbek Ambassador to Pakistan, Oybek Osmanov called on Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Hina Rabbani Khar on Tuesday.

According to the statement issued by the Spokesperson of the Foreign Office, Asim Iftikhar Ahmad, the Ambassador, and the State Minister agreed to further improve bilateral ties between the countries. They agreed to do so by enhancing connectivity and greater economic cooperation. They also agreed that this will benefit both the countries, their people, and the entire region.

The Uzbek Ambassador informed Hina Rabbani Khar of a possible Free Trade Agreement between Uzbekistan and Pakistan in near future. He further said that a Preferential Trade Agreement (PTA) had already been signed for the promotion of bilateral trade which had great potential to deepen trade ties in the future.

Moreover, the envoy pointed out that the two countries have inked a transit trade deal. This deal facilitated the movement of goods between the two countries via land routes through trucks.

Pak-Uzbek Trade relations: 

Previously, about the Free Trade Agreement, the Uzbek Ambassador has said, “After such agreement, economic integration between Central Asia and South Asia will expand and regional trade will get a considerable boost”.

A week earlier in a press meeting, Ambassador Osmanov also highlighted a future railway link between Uzbekistan and Pakistan. He stated that the railway link between Uzbekistan, Afghanistan, and Pakistan will link their trade with the regional countries. It will also give them access to Euro-Asian and European markets.

In the same meeting, Uzbek Ambassador emphasized that he would like to complete all major gas pipeline projects. He referred to the Turkmenistan, Afghanistan, Pakistan, and India (TAPI) pipeline for economic and trade integration.

The ambassador also highlighted the need for an increase in bilateral trade. He said that bilateral trade stood at $20 million in the past. It reached $185 million in 2021, and PTA will increase the trade further.

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