A Pakistani delegation will reach China on Sunday to make efforst for the relocation of Chinese textile industry to Pakistan to address the growing trade imbalance between the two countries.
The delegation is led by Commerce Minister Gohar Ejaz and will begin talks on Monday. It is said to be the first visit by a commerce minister. He ias accompanied by a high-profile business delegation
“China’s imports to Pakistan are $20 billion per annum whereas Pakistan’s exports are just $ 2 billion per annum,” Ejaz told Business Recorder.
The figures amount to total imports from China worth $100 billion while only managing to import $10 billion over five years.
The gap is attributed to a failure to negotiate a Free Trade Agreement which has kept Pakistani exports at a lower level.
Gohar is heading to China with ambitious targets of relocating 10% of Chinese industry to Pakistan to gain $50 billion in exports, according to Business Recorder.
“I can find ways to generate $ 100 billion exports only with China,” he said.
The minister told the media before his departure that the collaboration of private businesses will be the next step in Pakistan’s trade relationship with China.
The delegation is expected to visit Suzhou City, a major industrial hub in China. Ejaz will also virtually particpate in the ministerial meeting of the World Trade Organisation.
The minister also hopes to brief Chinese investors on the importance of the Special Investment Facilitation Council.
Apart from textiles, the visit will also cover sectors agricultural, electric vehicles, marble, cement, fertiliser, fruit, vegetable, home appliances, glass and chemical.
Earlier this month, the minister had claimed that a Free Trade Agreement with the Gulf Cooperation Council had been ‘finalised’.
The current account deficit is a major issue facing the Pakistani economy that has continuously drained Pakistan’s foreign exchange reseves. The country is trying to find lasting solutions as it tries to stay afloat with the International Monetary Fund and other international lenders.