President of the Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ICCI) Ahsan Zafar Bakhtawari made a proposal to create a Turkmen-Pakistani joint transport company. The idea was announced on Wednesday, 9 November, during a meeting with the Ambassador of Turkmenistan to Pakistan Atajan Movlamov.
According to Pakistani news outlets, Bakhtawari spoke in favor of developing strong business ties between their private sectors of the two countries in order to realize the potential of all untapped areas of cooperation.
In this regard, he proposed the organization of visits of trade delegations and exhibitions on a mutual basis.
Speaking about the challenges in the field of connectivity, the head of the Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry proposed to create a joint transport and goods company to solve logistical problems between the two countries. He also proposed to introduce long-term visas for businessmen in order to facilitate the exchange of trade delegations from both sides.
Bakhtawari called the establishment of air, road and rail links between Pakistan and the Central Asian countries an important condition for improving trade relations.
According to him, the road link through Istanbul, Turkmenistan, and Karachi can become the shortest route for the transportation of goods, with goods being transported in 6 days even at a speed of 50 km/h, whereas sea transportation takes about 35 days and is also associated with high costs.
Speaking at the meeting, Ambassador Movlamov said that Turkmenistan seeks to expand access to the open seas, being a landlocked country. Transit trade is important for the country, as the shortest trade route passes through the ports of Karachi and Gwadar, he added, addressing the business community.
Turkmenistan and Pakistan have a huge potential for bilateral trade, which can be enhanced through contacts between peoples, the Ambassador stressed.
Speaking about the energy cooperation between the two countries, the envoy spoke in detail about the TAPI gas pipeline project, which will help Pakistan meet the energy needs of its growing population.
ICCI Senior Vice President Faad Wahid said at the meeting that the Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry plans to host an ECO business forum, in which diplomats and relevant government officials will be invited to discuss important issues, including the TAPI project and the development of direct links between Pakistan and Turkmenistan. ///nCa, 10 November 2022