COMMENCEMENT OF CHINA PAKISTAN FREE TRADE AGREEMENT PHASE-II AND BUSINESS/EXPORT OPPORTUNITIES FOR PAKISTAN

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Faisalabad: The Ministry of Commerce and Trade Development Authority of Pakistan (TDAP) organized an awareness seminar on the 2nd phase of China-Pakistan Free Trade Agreement on 25th February, 2020 at Faisalabad Chamber of Commerce & Industry, Faisalabad.

 The seminar was one of the many from a series of seminars being organized by the Ministry of Commerce and TDAP across the country to disseminate the trade and export opportunities arising out of CPFTA-II, which has become operational from 1st January, 2020.

A large number of business persons from FCCI and major trade associations of Textiles, Foundry & Engineering, Agro Food and Chemical Industry of this region attended the seminar.

Secretary FCCI thanked all the guests and provided in-depth introduction of the Faisalabad Chamber of Commerce & Industry (FCCI)

Dr. Muhammad Hamid Ali, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Commerce, Islamabad welcomed the distinguished guests.

 Speaking on the accession, he briefed the audience about the 2nd phase of CPFTA, which offers an enhanced and deeper market access to Pakistan.

He apprised that under CPFTA-II, China has eliminated the tariff on 313 high priority tariff lines of Pakistan’s export interest, providing Pakistan a preferential treatment.

He stated that safeguard measures and balance of payment clauses are included under this CPFTA II to protect local industry.

Mr. Riaz Ahmed Sheikh, Director General, TDAP Karachi delivered a detailed presentation regarding various aspects of CPFTA-II and provided an insight on sector-wise benefits arising out of this FTA.

He explained that in CPFTA-II, Pakistan benefits from asymmetrical liberalization placing it at par with ASEAN countries in trade with China.

He briefly mentioned Safeguard Measures, Electronic Data Exchange and the use of an extensive Sensitive List that will make implementation of CPFTA-II meaningful.

 Finally, he provided a detailed export analysis of the 313 lines on which Pakistan enjoys 0% duty covering diverse sectors like Agro-Food, Textiles, Leather, Chemicals, Footwear, Machinery, Auto, Jewellery, Plastics & Other Miscellaneous Items. He presented a timeline of further liberalization between Pakistan and China.

Ms. Anjum Asad Amin, Member, National Tariff Commission provided detailed information regarding the safeguard measures which have been incorporated in the 2nd phase of CPFTA in order to protect the Pakistan industry.

Mr. Muzammil Sultan, Ex-President FCCI, in his remarks highlighted the significance of China in regional trade and appreciated the opportunities under CPFTA-II.

 He expressed hope that this agreement would help in narrowing the trade deficit between Pakistan and China and assured that the industry is willing to collaborate the government for making the most of CPFTA-II.

The event ended with a Q&A Session, wherein all the queries of the participants were responded thoroughly. The event was ended with a vote of thanks by the Ex-President FCCI, Mr. Muzammil Sultan, who also distributed mementoes among the worthy guest speakers.

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