Islamabad: Pakistan’s air linkages with the outside world, particularly with regional countries, are critical for regional commerce and economic integration, according to United Business Group (UBG) Secretary General Zafar Bakhtawari.

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The ‘Gwadar Port’ is emerging as a huge opportunity not only for regional countries but also for worldwide commerce in the recent geo-economic landscape, which will increase our trade linkages with regional countries as well as with global trade markets.

Even a $60 billion megaproject with global and regional significance, such as the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), will not only shape future trade trends but lso the world’s major trading markets.

According to Zafar, bilateral trade between Pakistan and Afghanistan has a potential of roughly $2 billion, which may be increased by adding new sectors.

Afghanistan has a transit trade agreement with Uzbekistan, and Pakistan has a TTA with Afghanistan, according to him. As a result, Pakistani goods may be able to access the $100 billion Central Asian market through the Transit Trade Agreement with Uzbekistan.

He stated that Uzbekistan is currently heavily reliant on the Iranian seaport of ‘Bandar Abbas,’ which is accessible via Turkmenistan.

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It’s worth noting that nine rounds of bilateral negotiations on the proposed FTA between the two sides were held in the past in various avenues, even though serious and concrete steps were needed to increase bilateral trade, which had dropped to $650 million per year from $1 billion per year.

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