Islamabad, Jan. 10 (ANI): The commerce ministers of Pakistan, Iran and Afghanistan are scheduled to meet in Islamabad next week to outline steps for enhancing economic cooperation, a critical step for the three neighbouring countries aimed at powering their economies, according to officials.
The meeting is taking place in the backdrop of a trilateral summit held in Islamabad in February last year where President Asif Ali Zardari, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and Afghan President Hamid Karzai asked their commerce ministers to prioritise cooperation for socio-economic development, reports The Express Tribune.
The ministers would discuss possibilities of increasing the trade volume and how to facilitate traders and remove bottlenecks in the way of commerce, an Afghan source said.
The ministers will review proposals for expanding transit trade and encouraging private sector investment. Proposals for preferential tariff, free trade and barter trade will also come under discussion.
The meeting will pave the way for cooperation in energy, mining and mineral, agriculture and other sectors.
The trilateral summit had also tasked the ministers with discussing measures to enhance connectivity by promoting cooperation in projects related to infrastructure, road and rail links, transport and communications.
An Afghan official said there were bright prospects for economic cooperation between Pakistan and Afghanistan, which could take bilateral trade to 5 billion dollars from the current 2.5 billion dollars.
A recent decision by the two governments on visa facilitation would also give a boost to economic activities and bilateral trade, he hoped. (ANI)