ISLAMABAD - Federal Minister for Planning, Development and Reforms Ahsan Iqbal has said Pakistan, Afghanistan and Central Asian States can become a new economic zone.

He was addressing the launching ceremony of RCCI’s Pakistan Afghanistan Central Asian Regions Trade Summit (PACTS) at a local hotel in Islamabad.

President of Rawalpindi Chamber Mian Humayun Parvez, Senior Vice President Saqib Rafiq, Vice President Muhammad Aqil Obaid, group leaders Sheikh Shabbir, Sohail Altaf, S. M. Naseem, former presidents, memebers of the executive committee and a large number of traders were present at the ceremony.

The minister said: “No country can progress if there is uncertainty; a stable economy needs a political stability and continuation of the policies. Public-private partnership can play a vital role here. We need to focus on our economic policies and export oriented policies can help Pakistan to achieve its vision of 2025.”

He urged traders, chambers and private sector to come forward and help government in achieving its goals. He referred to South Korea and other countries which doubled their exports within a short span of time. He assured traders of government assistance and cooperation in this regard.

Earlier, President of RCCI said that the Rawalpindi Chamber of Commerce and Industry (RCCI) will be organizing Pakistan Afghanistan Central Asian Regions Trade Summit (PACTS) on August 10.

The major aim of the Summit is to explore the new trade avenues, business opportunities and to discuss trade aspects, finding the means of ease of doing business between Pakistan, Afghanistan and Central Asia.

Day-long summit will have the keynote speakers, representatives from the embassies of CARs, Afghanistan where the focus will be to discuss trade linkages between the region including air, land and railway networks. We will look forward for prospective opportunities of trade fairs and conferences in Pakistan, Afghanistan and Central Asian Regions.

The PACTS was the brain child of the RCCI accented to enhance trade opportunities between Pakistan, Afghanistan and the central Asian states, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan. PACTS hinges on four segments. First, a hosting of preliminary conference observed by the representatives of all affiliated states and Afghanistan. Second, a research work conducted by autonomous consultant to develop a comprehensive report which will be presented to Prime Minister in third phase along with an advocacy campaign.

In the last stage the advocacy will be replicated in conference and exhibition to be held in any member state of Central Asia or Afghanistan.