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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 suspends talks on BIT with Pakistan
The United Sates has suspended talks on bilateral investment treaty (BIT) with Pakistan, saying that it plans to change its template, a senior official of the Commerce Ministry said on Wednesday.
Skewed Afghan transit trade ‘pact’
A trade agreement between any two countries is based on mutually beneficial terms while Pakistan has inked the Afghan – Pakistan Transit Trade Agreement that tends to compromise our national interests and will eventually hurt the domestic industry.
Pak-Nepal plan free trade pact: Report
Pakistan and Nepal plan to ink a Free Trade Agreement (FTA), with a high-level bilateral task force set to finalise the pact soon in a bid to boost bilateral trade and business, a news report said today.
China opening trade doors to Pakistan
China has pledged to provide trade concessions to Islamabad that it is not getting from the United States and European Union
BoI tasked to facilitate investment
The Board of Investment (BoI) has been tasked to formulate Special Economic Zone Act (SEZA), update the existing Promotion and Protection of Investment Act 1976 and conclude Bilateral Investment Treaties (BIT) and Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with other countries specially the United States.
The untold story of Pakistan China trade
Pakistan and China have increased bilateral trade agreements with the help of the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) which was signed between the two countries in 2005.
EU says Pakistan must wait for trade breaks
The European Union told Pakistan on Friday it could gain increased access to EU markets in one to three years but ruled out immediately granting Islamabad new trade concessions.
Pakistan, US to start BIT talks this month
Pakistan and the United States are scheduled to restart negotiations on Bilateral Investment Treaty (BIT) in the third week of May
Pakistan, Nepal pledge to improve bilateral ties
Pakistan and Nepal have decided to hold their joint economic commission’s meeting this year in Islamabad. It is stalled for the last five years.
Pakistan’s trade bear-hug with China
China and Pakistan, which have strongly increased bilateral trade this decade with the help of a series of free-trade agreements (FTAs), have committed to doubling their commerce within the next three to four years.


  • Pakistan FTAs
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