Iran and Pakistan recently clinched a barter trade agreement during the meeting of their Joint Economic Committee in Tehran. The Nov. 6 deal appears designed to revive bilateral trade by sidestepping economic sanctions on Iran, which have particularly hit commerce over the past decade.
Pakistan was Iran’s eighth-largest trade partner in 2008–09, prior to the intensification of United Nations and US sanctions on Tehran over its nuclear program. But the bilateral trade of some 1.3B USD at the time could not withstand the negative impact of the sanctions. In a reversal from this trajectory, Pakistan’s Commerce Secretary Sualeh Faruqi is now optimistic that the new barter mechanism will solve enough obstacles to increase annual trade with Iran to roughly 5B USD by 2023.
Announcing that all Pakistani companies will be accommodated, Iranian Industry, Mining and Trade Minister Reza Fatemi Amin stated on Nov. 6, “With the measures taken, the existing barriers will be removed within the next three months and the trade processes will be facilitated. Hopefully, the Pakistani government will provide Iranian companies with the same facilities.” Such comments indicate growing cooperation on the economic front between the two countries...
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