4.5% Intra D-8 Trade is insufficient; PTA needs implementation: Irfan Iqbal Sheikh

Karachi, August 02, 2022 (PPI-OT):Mr. Irfan Iqbal Sheikh, President FPCCI, has expressed his astonishment that the potentially potent economic and trade bloc of Developing Eight (D-8) has only achieved 4.5 percent regional or intra D-8 trade so far; despite being formed 25 years back and having a D-8 Preferential Trade agreement (D-8 PTA) in place.

Mr. Irfan Iqbal Sheikh has stressed the need to implement the D-8 PTA at the earliest and in its true spirit; as regional trade will bring prosperity and economic cooperation in the entire region. He added that regional economic blocs have up to 70 – 75 percent of their total trade intra-regionally; and, we are still stuck at a meager 4.5 percent. Mr. Irfan Iqbal Sheikh has apprised that D-8 includes seven other very important countries for Pakistan economically for trade, investment and joint ventures; i.e. Bangladesh, Indonesia, Egypt, Iran, Malaysia, Nigeria and Turkiye.

FPCCI President noted that the D-8 bloc represents more than 5 percent of the global GDP; which makes the alliance a significant one for the D-8 countries in particular and the entire region in general. He explained that only if we can capture the D-8 market in value-added textiles; IT and ITeS services; sports goods; rice, fruits and vegetables; surgical equipment and construction materials, Pakistan can enhance its exports by $5 – 10 billion within 2 – 3 years.

FPCCI Chief said that the latest high-profile assembly of the bloc, i.e. D-8 Business Forum and Expo 2022, held in Dhaka Bangladesh; and, has seen the participation of several foreign, commerce and investment ministers from D-8 countries. Specifically, presidents of various federal and apex chambers of the D-8 countries also attended the business forum and expo; along with prominent business leaders of their respective countries, he added.

Mr. Irfan Iqbal Sheikh has informed the business, industry and trade community of Pakistan that a decision to fully operationalize the D-8 PTA by the end of October has been taken; with the objective of growing the trade within the bloc to $500 billion by the year 2030. Mr. Irfan Iqbal sheikh has highlighted that, in the last 25 years, D-8 countries have increased their intra D-8 trade volume from approximately $40 billion to $140 billion and has pinned his hopes in the alliance to achieve the target of $500 billion trade by 2030.

For more information, contact:
Head Office,
Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI)
Federation House, Main Clifton, Karachi, Pakistan
Tel: +92-21-35873691-94
Fax: +92-21-35874332
Email: info@fpcci.org.pk
Website: http://fpcci.org.pk/