ISLAMABAD - Federal Minister for Commerce Syed Naveed Qamar on Thursday said that the opening of Pakistan-Iran ‘Pishin Border Market’ is expected in the coming month, which will increase the trend of free trade between the two countries.

The Pishin border market had been completed and its inauguration was on the cards, while work on other three markets including Gabd, Rimdan, and Kohak would start soon, he said. Federal Minister for Commerce Syed Naveed Qamar said this during a meeting with the Iranian Parliamentary delegation, which was led by Malek Fazeli, and included members Majid Naseri Nejad and Dr Mohsen Fathi here in Ministry office.

The minister said that a total of 12 border markets have been proposed by both sides to increase the volume of mutual trade between the two countries, out of which 9 have been mutually approved. He said that there will be trade through these border markets under the barter system. 

The minister said there was dire need to increase the trade volume in petroleum and gas, which would help increasing mutual trade volume. Naveed Qamar said, “We are importing liquified petroleum gas (LPG) from Iran and its import also needs to be increased. There is also a need to increase its production in Pakistan”, he said. “We import electricity from Iran for Gwadar and this also needs to be increased”, he said. When the delegation proposed to increase mutual cooperation and trade in the pharmaceutical sector, the minister said that Pakistan was also doing imports in the pharmaceutical sector and exports were also going on. He also suggested that people from the pharmaceutical sector should be included in the next trade delegation. On this occasion, Malek Fazeli, head of the Iranian parliamentary delegation, said that Pakistan and Iran are neighboring countries with a common border of 920 kilometers from which mutual trade is also carried out and the movement of people continues throughout the year.

He expressed the wish that there should be an increase in the volume of mutual trade between the two countries adding that Iran cooperated with Pakistan for overcoming the shortage of onions and tomatoes. He said that as a member of the Iranian Parliament, he considers cooperation between Pakistan and Iran in the field of energy essential. Similarly, work on Iran Pakistan gas pipeline also needs to complete in near future. He said that there is a difficult situation in Pakistan due to floods and natural disasters, especially in Sindh and Balochistan. In this regard, the government of Iran will fully cooperate with Pakistan for the rehabilitation of these people.