Islamabad, February 28, 2018 (PPI-OT): The Inaugural Session of Pakistan-Philippines Joint Economic Commission was held in Islamabad on February 27-28, 2018. The Session was Co-chaired by Mr. Arif Ahmed Khan, Secretary, Economic Affairs Division and Dr. Ceferino S. Rodolfo, Deputy Minister, Industry Development and Trade Policy Group, (IDTPG) Department of Trade and Industry, Philippines. Detailed meetings were held between experts of the two sides on a number of issues, especially focusing on Trade, Investment, Energy, Agriculture, Tourism, Health, Industries and other matters of mutual interest.
During his stay in Pakistan, Dr. Ceferino S. Rodolfo called on the Minister for Commerce and Textile and Federal Secretaries for Ministries of National Health Services, Regulation and Coordination and Foreign Affairs of Pakistan. Protocol of the Session was signed by both Co-chairs Wednesday morning, based on major actions/decisions. The highlights of major decisions taken during Pakistan-Philippines Joint Economic Commission are as under:
Both sides presented prospective export products for each other’s markets. In this regard Pakistan side offered Rice, Fruit (especially Pakistani citrus and Mangoes), Leather Garments, Pharmaceutical Goods, Sports Goods and Surgical Items. While Philippines side presented Electronics and semi-conductors; Automotive Parts and Components; Processed Food and Halal Products.
Both sides agreed to hold and actively participate in trade fairs, single country and product based exhibitions in each other’s country on a regular basis.
Both sides agreed to conduct feasibility studies on the possibility of Preferential Trade Agreement and to the formation of a Technical Working Group within the JEC for this purpose.
Both sides agreed to re-activate the Pakistan-Philippines Joint Business Forum/Council with the participation of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Philippines and Federation of Pakistan Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Pakistan.
Pakistan offered Philippines investment opportunities in Power sector of Pakistan in renewable energy and small hydro power projects and training in the areas of hydro carbon like exploration, production, processing and survey etc.
The two sides agreed to collaborate in the area of post-harvest management and processing of rice and banana.
Pakistan invited Philippines to invest in construction of Highways in Pakistan on Build, Operate and Transfer (BOT) basis.
Philippines shared investment opportunities for Pakistan pharmaceutical and medical equipment manufacturing in the Philippines.
The Parties mutually agreed for exchange of visits between the officials of Central Banks of the two countries.
Both sides deliberated upon and agreed to review the proposals regarding revision of the convention on the Avoidance of Double Taxation between Pakistan and Philippines as well as explore the possibility of cooperation in matters related to Customs. The meeting was held in a spirit of friendship, cooperation and desire to make rapid advances in the above mentioned sectors/areas.
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