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ISLAMABAD: President SAARC Chamber of Commerce and Industry Iftikhar Ali Malik on Sunday said that Pakistan’s prudent decision about barter trade with Afghanistan and Iran would further strengthen trilateral trade relations and foster existing economic ties among the three neighbouring Muslim countries.

Talking to a delegation of traders led by Waqas Anjum which called on him, he said it is a good decision of the government to allow imports and exports under barter trade with both countries to promote trade with regional states.

He said barter trade has tremendous importance to strengthen regional trade connectivity and to do with foreign exchange and other challenges confronted by the regional countries.

He said it is good point to note that Pakistan government has amended relevant part of import and export policy orders 2020 to launch barter trade under the arrangements finalized after taking stakeholders into confidence.

He termed the decision a welcoming development because it was being pursued by all relevant stakeholders of all three countries in true letter and spirit to derive the desired results of economic cooperation and prosperity of the people of the region.

Iftikhar Ali Malik hoped that the appropriate mechanism of barter trade would be placed in action and finalised by the authorities of Iran and Pakistan.

He said special desk has been established at SAARC Chamber headquarters to facilitate the traders of member countries especially for Afghanistan.

A member of the delegation former President Lahore Chamber and Chairman Rice Exporters Association of Pakistan (REAP) Shahzad Ali Malik said the decision will provide ample opportunity to our export to Iran especially of rice including Guard rice which is in great demand that’s very popular being best in taste worldwide.

He urged the private sector including regional chambers to move forward for taking full advantage of the big opportunity.

He said REAP welcome the step and term it a constructive stride in right direction to foster the barter trade, he concluded.

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