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The government of Pakistan is a keen pursuer of bilateral trade and investment agreements. It has a full FTA with Sri Lanka (2005), a PTA with Iran (2004) and Mauritius (2007), Early Harvest Schemes with China (2005) and Malaysia (2007), and is part of both ECOTA and SAFTA. It is in various stages of FTA talks, or preparations for talks, with Brunei, Indonesia, Jordan, Thailand, Malaysia, Morocco, Singapore, the Gulf Cooperation Council, Canada, Switzerland, Indonesia, Nepal, China, Turkey and Russia (among others). In July 2006, it signed a Framework Agreement on Trade with Mercosur.

Negotiations on a US-Pakistan bilateral investment treaty, as a step towards a US-Pakistan FTA, have been quite controversial and are unconcluded. After talks restarted in mid-2010, a draft US-Pakistan BIT was sent for approval to Pakistan’s Cabinet in April 2012. The Pakistani government has already signed almost 50 BITs with other countries. In 2011 Germany ratified a BIT with Pakistan.

On a wider scale, there is talk of possible Pakistani FTAs with Afghanistan, Algeria, the EU, Japan, Laos, Mexico, New Zealand, South Africa and Tunisia.

last update: May 2012
Photo: Asian Development Bank/CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

US agrees to take disputes to Pakistani courts first
Amid calls to make public the draft of bilateral investment treaty, the government claims that it has gained much and lost nothing to the United States as Washington has agreed to first taking any business dispute to Pakistani courts for settlement.
Investment treaty with Canada opposed
Pakistan’s ministry of commerce has opposed the proposed bilateral investment treaty with Canada on a number of grounds as the controversial clause of covered investment is only to favour Canadian companies, The News learnt reliably on Thursday.
BIT of no use if FTA between Pakistan, US not signed
The signing of Bilateral Investment Treaty (BIT) will not bear fruit without signing Free Trade Agreement (FTA) between Pakistan and United States of America (USA).
Pakistan now ready to engage with EU on GSP plus, FTA: Zardari
President Asif Ali Zardari has said that Pakistan is now ready to engage with the European Union (EU) on Generalised System of Preferences (GSP) plus and a Free Trade Agreement.
Bilateral trade: Pakistan, South Korea reiterate ties
Islamabad and Seoul can raise bilateral trade up to $3 billion, for which both governments should expedite negotiations to sign a free trade agreement and encourage the visit of business delegations and exhibitors from either side, said a press release obtained from the Karachi Chambers of Commerce and Industry (KCCI) on Thursday.
Pakistan puts tariff, trade barriers on the EFTA table
An official delegation of Pakistan led by Secretary Commerce has discussed tariff preferences and reduction of non tariff barriers with the officials of the European Free Trade Association (EFTA) member in Geneva.
Pak-US investment treaty draft sent to cabinet
The draft of the Pak-US Bilateral Investment Treaty (BIT) has been sent to the Pakistani cabinet for approval, official sources told The News on Monday.
‘Time is ripe to finalise Pakistan, Morocco FTA’
Pakistan and Morocco should finalise Free Trade Agreement (FTA) as it is conducive to enhance overall trade, which provides comprehensive and legally binding protection to foreign capital, repatriation of principal amount and the profits.
Turkey’s steel exporters stress PTA/FTA
Though trade agreements like Preferential Trade Agreement (PTA) or Free Trade Agreement (FTA) are yet to be signed Pakistan and Turkey despite the claims from both sides for the last eight or so years, visiting Turkish steel exporters have stressed the need for just such agreement in order to boost bilateral trade.
Pakistan, GCC negotiating Free Trade Agreement: Dr Asim
Special Assistant to the Prime Minister for Petroleum and Natural Resources Dr Asim Hussain on Thursday said that the Pakistan-Qatar Joint Ministerial Commission (JMC) would provide an excellent opportunity to enhance economic and trade relations between the two countries.


  • Pakistan FTAs
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