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ISLAMABAD: While showing concern at the slow pace of implementation of previous pacts, Russia has shown an interest in revival of Pakistan Steel Mills, establishment of LNG floating power plants, cooperation in oil and gas sector and trade, well informed sources in EAD told Business Recorder.

These matters would be discussed in detail at the seventh meeting of the Pakistan Russian Inter-Governmental Commission (IGC) on Trade, Economic, Scientific and Technical Cooperation to be held in Yekaterinburg (Russia) on November 24-26, 2021.

The meeting will be co-chaired by Omar Ayub Khan, Minister of Economic Affairs, Chairman of the Pakistani side of the Commission and Nikolay Shulginov, Minister of Energy of the Russian Federation, Chairman of the Russian side of the Commission.

The meeting will also be attended by members and experts on the two sides of the Commission.

The two sides have expressed satisfaction that even in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic Pakistan and Russia are finding opportunities to discuss issues of trade and economic cooperation.

Both sides are ready for consistent implementation of the decisions taken at the meeting of the Commission as they noted with satisfaction the constructive nature of the bilateral political dialogue including contacts at the highest levels, and the productive cooperation within international organizations.

On the implementation of decisions and recommendations of the sixth meeting of the Commission both sides noted with satisfaction the progress in implementing the decisions taken at the sixth meeting of the Commission. However, at the same time, the two sides drew attention to the slow implementation of some of the agreements reached during the previous meeting of the Commission, and called for speeding up their implementation.

Both countries are expected to hold the fourth meeting of the Joint Working Group on Trade and Investment in the middle of 2022.

Both sides feel that the current volume of bilateral trade does not correspond to the existing potential. According to the Federal Customs Service of Russia, in 2020, the Russian-Pakistani trade turnover increased by 45.8% compared to 2019 to $ 789.8 million. In this regard, both sides will continue joint efforts to strengthen Pakistani-Russian cooperation in the field of trade and investment.

The two sides will agree to take necessary measures to expand access to mutual markets in order to significantly increase the volume of bilateral hade.

The Russian side has conveyed its concern about the introduction of an anti-dumping duty on Russian Phthalic anhydride on June 5, 2021, following an anti-dumping investigation.

In order to establish legislation grounds for the development of customs cooperation between Pakistan and Russia the two sides will agree to continue joint work aimed at signing the following documents: (i) agreement between the Government of the Russian Federation and the Government of Pakistan regarding Cooperation and Mutual Assistance in Customs Matters; (ii) protocol between the Federal Customs Service (Russian Federation) and the Federal Board of Revenue Pakistan on exchange of documents and data on customs value of goods transported between the Russian Federation and Pakistan; and (iii) protocol between the Federal Customs Service (Russian Federation) and the Ministry of Commerce of Pakistan on administrative cooperation, information exchange and mutual assistance under the unified system of tariff preferences of the Eurasian Economic Union.

Both sides will confirm their readiness to provide assistance to the Russian Pakistani project in the field of joint development and production of information security tools and cooperation in the field of International Information Security.

Russian company (Control 2 goLLC) will assist in the implementation of business projects in Pakistan in the field of monitoring agricultural land and crops, water resources and infrastructure, using the collection of "Big Data" and their analysis using artificial intelligence algorithms and deep machine learning, to determine the state of crops, yields and the level of crop losses from natural disasters.

The two sides will discuss the draft agreement between Russia and Pakistan on International Road Transport and will agree on its final version.

The Federal Air Transport Agency, together with the Civil Aviation Agency of Pakistan (PCAA), will continue to coordinate the draft Working Agreement on Airworthiness with a view to signing it as soon as possible.

The Pakistani side will send to Rosselkhoznadzor, the Russian federal service for veterinary and phytosanitary surveillance, the previously requested veterinary and sanitary requirements for import of Russian livestock products, as well as, information on the maximum permissible levels of substances in products imported to Pakistan by the end of 2021.

The Pakistani side will agree on a veterinary certificate for edible fish, seafood and finished products exported from Russia to Pakistan by the end of 2021.

Russian company LLC is interested in implementing a project to introduce innovative technologies using [email protected] natural humic acid fertilizer and feed additive in Pakistani agriculture in order to increase yields and improve product quality, reduce the applied doses of chemical fertilizers and pesticides, increase productivity of livestock and poultry and the development of organic agricultural production.

The Russian side will inform the Pakistan side of the readiness of Russian companies, including but not limited to (Security Code) LLC, T8 LLC, (Scad Tech) GC to cooperate with the Pakistan side in the sphere of ICT.

Both sides will develop cooperation in the field of pharmaceuticals. The Russian side will send commercial proposals of Russian pharmaceutical manufacturers on supply of its products to Pakistan. The Pakistan side will forward the information about the existing preferences in this sphere to facilitate the entry of Russian pharmaceutical manufacturers to the Pakistan market.

Both sides have noted significant potential of cooperation in the field of metallurgy. Russia will show readiness of Russian companies to participate in restoring Pakistan Steel Mills in Karachi. The two sides have shown a willingness to exchange necessary information, possible business models and conditions on the proposed restoration plan.

The Russian side has confirmed its interest in supply and after-sales service of Russian civil aircraft in the interest of Pakistan state and commercial organizations.

According to Russia (UAZ) LLC is interested in supply of assembled vehicles for state and private customers and implementation of the vehicle assembly project (SKD kits) in Pakistan.

Russian company JSC 'Central Design Bureau, Iceberg' will organize joint implementation of the project of a floating power plant operating on Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) with a capacity of 50 and 1 50 MW in the territorial coastal waters of Pakistan.

Both sides will welcome the interest of Rosgeo JSC in intensifying cooperation with state and private structures of Pakistan in the field of geological exploration for hydrocarbons and minerals. The two sides will support the interest of power Machines JSC to act as a supplier of main equipment for the construction of the second stage of the DasuHPP, as well as to participate in other perspective projects in the power industry of Pakistan.

Both sides will welcome the continuation of constructive negotiations between the Zarubezhneft JSC, Pakistan Petroleum Limited and Mari Petroleum Company on options for possible cooperation in the implementation of joint projects for the development of oil and gas fields in Pakistan and in third countries.

Pakistan has noted the interest of Russian and Pakistan sides to continue interaction in order to explore the opportunities and prospects for mutually beneficial cooperation in oil and gas sector in Pakistan and third countries, including the implementation of prospective joint projects in gas exploration and production.

Russian company PJSC Severstal will extend cooperation in developing fruitful cooperation with SSGC, ISGS, Oriental Stream Limited and other companies in the oil and gas and metallurgical sectors in order to supply steel products to the Pakistani market.

Both sides agreed to sign statutory documents of the Special Purpose Company (SPC) for the construction of the gas pipeline by December 31, 2021.

The Russians have requested Pakistan to support Moscow's bid to host the World Exhibition EXPO-2030 in Moscow. Pakistan will support the Russian bid.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2021

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