Pakistan can ease inflation, fight poverty with lift from FTA, CPEC

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BELJING
A China-Pakistan free trade agreement (FTA) and the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) can play an important part in leading Pakistan’s economy to prosperity.
The tariff arrangement documented in the second phase of the China-Pakistan FTA, which was signed by leaders of the two countries in April, came into force on the first day of 2020, it was reported.
According to the new protocol, both countries will lower tariffs to zero on 75 percent of taxable items in their tariff catalogs. The upgraded FTA will further free up bilateral trade.
Pakistan’s exports to China is expected to grow under the second phase of the FTA and narrow the bilateral trade imbalance. Advisor of Prime Minister on Commerce and Textile, Abdul Razak Dawood, reportedly said Pakistan’s exports to China have the potential to grow 20 times under the new FTA. Significantly lower tariffs between the two countries will deepen trade ties, effectively promoting the construction of the CPEC.
China is investing billions via the CPEC, which is boosting local infrastructure. By building road networks and electricity facilities, the CPEC enables Pakistan to develop in multiple industries including manufacturing and tourism, and improve living standards.
Amid high inflation, Pakistan should focus on poverty reduction as well. China’s poverty reduction effort has come a long way and shown great success.
China’s experience can shed light on other developing countries’ paths, such as Pakistan. China is willing to share its experience and conduct cooperative projects to help Pakistan in poverty alleviation and sustainable growth.

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