Pakistan, Russia reaffirm commitment to strengthen economic relations

Pakistan, Russia reaffirm commitment to strengthen economic relations

Islamabad (Web Desk/Agencies): The 8th session of Pakistan-Russia Inter-Governmental Commission (IGC) on trade, economic, scientific and technical cooperation concluded on Friday.

The three-day IGC meeting, co-chaired by Russia’s Energy Minister Nikolay Shulginov and Pakistan’s Minister for Economic Affairs Ayaz Sadiq, was attended by senior level delegates including ministers and officials from both sides.

According to a joint statement issued after the IGC meeting, the two sides reaffirmed the commitment to a strong and comprehensive bilateral economic relationship.

Later reading out a joint statement alongside the Russian Energy Minister, Sardar Ayaz Sadiq said both sides have agreed to work on a comprehensive plan for energy cooperation which will form the foundation for future work and it is to be finalized in 2023.

It was agreed that after consensus on technical specifications, the oil and gas trade transactions will be structured in a way that mutually benefits both the countries. This process will be completed in March this year.

It was agreed that Pakistan Stream Gas Pipeline should be considered in terms of comprehensive infrastructure and economically viable project for sustainable gas infrastructure development ensuring affordable gas supplies.

Sardar Ayaz Sadiq said Pakistan and Russia reaffirmed their commitment to a strong and cooperative economic relationship, reiterating that such a relationship contributes to the economic well-being of the two countries as well as the region.

The two sides explored additional avenues of cooperation. They agreed to enhance cooperation in the areas of trade, investment, higher education, customs, communications and transport, industry, railways, agriculture science, science and technology and Information Technology.

It was agreed that the relevant ministries and departments of both sides will rigorously follow-up to exploit the potential in diverse sectors for common prosperity.

The Russian side was invited towards potential projects of the federal and provincial governments of Pakistan including in public private mode. The Russian businessmen were requested to explore this opportunity.

They agreed to nominate focal persons to enhance mutual cooperation and discuss issues concerning connectivity and logistics in Central and South Asia.

The two sides also discussed innovative ways of doing business including through barter and agreed to explore the option further.

For regional integration and Eurasian connectivity, the two sides agreed to share information towards developing and improving rail and road infrastructure.

After the conclusion of 8th session ofthe IGC, the two sides also signed three agreements in the areas of aviation and custom related matters.

Sardar Ayaz Sadiq said some more agreements are also in the pipeline.

Meanwhile, addressing the press conference, the head of Russian delegation and Russia’s Energy Minister Nikolay Shulginov said that there has been an encouraging discussion between Russia and Pakistan in the field of energy and oil.

He said that the payment of oil import is likely to be made in friendly currency, for which negotiations are ongoing.

The Russian energy minister said that the talks will be finalised by the month of March.