ISLAMABAD: The Ambassador of Tajikistan Jononov Sherali called on Federal Minister for National Food Security & Research Mr. Sahibzada Muhammad Mehboob Sultan today in Islamabad.
Tajikistan is a landlocked country with a small population of around 9 million; Tijik economy is highly dependent on aluminum and cotton production. Pakistan has good relations with Tajikistan. An agreement on cooperation in agriculture field between two countries has been signed in 2011.
The 5th session of Pak-Tajik Ministerial Commission (JMC) was held in Pakistan in 2016, wherein the joint areas for cooperation and formulation of (JWG) were decided. Two sides worked and Pakistan shared its composition for proposed JWG through Economic Affairs Division and first meeting was agreed mutually to be held in Dushanbe (Tajikistan), but due to some reason the meeting was twice postponed.
Federal Minister agreed to pursue the objective and hold the delayed meeting to talk out matters of mutual benefits in Agro-Sector by April this year.
Federal Minister Mehboob Sultan expressed his desire to enhance trade between two countries as Pakistan produces world’s best kinnow and mangoes and Tajiks are eager to work on fruit production and Pakistani Kinnows are already famous in Tajikistan.
Federal Minister Mehboob Sultan said that Tajikistan must consider the import of Pakistani mangoes as Tajikistan is already importing dairy products, sugar and potato from Pakistan.
Mr. Sherali said that Tajikistan is wary of “Shadow economy” which affects the trade between the two countries. He further said that if Pakistan exports its rice (Saila Chawal) to these countries it would have no rival in the region and will rule the region.
Federal Minister said that peace in Afghanistan would increase the volume of trade and we could do away with smuggling issues as well. He further added that both countries enjoy great proximity in terms of culture and religion.
Mehboob sultan said that as per the directions of Honorable Prime Minister we are going to revive and boost our agriculture and increase volume of our exports along with exploring new international markets. Hence we are more than eager to expand the volume of trade between friendly countries in the region.
The Tajik Ambassador said that Tajikistan eyes to work on research and other joint ventures and said that there should be an exhibition of Pakistani mangoes in Tajikistan which could attract potential Tajik exporters.
Senior officials of the Ministry of National Food Security and Research were also present in the meeting.