QUETTA: Federal Finance Minister Asad Umar on Monday visited Balochistan’s capital city and called on Chief Minister Jam Kamal Khan Federal Minister for Defence Production Zubaida Jalal and local business community.
Addressing the Quetta Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the finance minister said that the government wants strong economic ties with all regional countries including India.
Deputy Speaker National Assembly Qasim Khan Suri, Balochistan Chamber of Commerce President Ghulam Farooq Khan and others were present on the occasion.
Asad Umar said Balochistan was the largest province of the country where central and provincial governments would work together for uplifting the agriculture sector.
He said there were vast opportunities of investment in Balochistan and rest of the country in agriculture, minerals and Halal food as per international demand including Malaysia.
Federal Minister said the next phase under China-Pak Economic Corridor (CPEC) was the establishment of industries and the government would try to ensure the inclusion of chambers of commerce in that phase.
He said BISP and other programs would be introduced for eradication of poverty from the country including Balochistan, while opportunities would be provided to youth to get advantage from their skills.
The finance minister said there should be elimination of double standard in international trade, adding we would try to build strong trade relations with all the countries of the region including Iran.
The government had also extended hand towards India for maintaining trade relations, but it did not respond in a positive manner, he added.
Asad said the government wanted to establish such a system in the country where all the complications being faced by the business community could be eliminated and they could be facilitated more.
He said the government was introducing a comprehensive plan to end smuggling which would improve the security situation in respective areas of the state. Smuggling would end after installation of fence at Pak-Afghan border, he added.
The minister said in past Pakistan’s exports got decreased instead of increase in PTA and FTA agreements due to lack of consultation with private sectors, but now it would not happen and private sector would be consulted on every level.
Asad Umar further said directive was issued for the completion of report within 30 days to promote trade activities between Pakistan and Iran.
He also assured the traders that he would take all possible measures to resolve their problems.