Brexit: Pak to conduct trade diplomacy with EU members

Mian Arshad

Islamabad—In the wake of recent referendum in Britain, Ministry of Commerce will conduct a round of trade diplomacy with the members of European Union in order to strengthen trade relations and augment support in the European Parliament and European Commission.
In this regard, Pakistan’s Trade Commissioner in Brussels has been directed to enhance diplomatic contacts with his counterparts especially with the representatives of countries in Northern Europe, which are traditionally in favor of trade liberalization.
Commercial officers posted in the Embassies of Pakistan in Europe will be issued directions to liaise with respective trade ministries of host countries in order to project Pakistan’s credentials and progress on trade and GSP+ front.
According to Ministry of Commerce, Minister for Commerce Engr. Khurram Dastgir Khan has said that it was time for Pakistan to win over new friends and revitalize the old friendships in the European Union to safeguard Pakistan’s interests in the EU Parliament and Commission.
The Minister said that Pakistan’s exports to the United Kingdom under the GSP+ scheme in the European Union will not be affected immediately from the result of the UK referendum. Pakistan’s exporters to the United Kingdom are urged to continue as before.
United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the European Union will be governed by Article 50 of EU Lisbon Treaty, which requires a notification from the withdrawing country; in this case the United Kingdom. This notification has not been issued yet.
After the said notification is issued, Article 50 envisages a minimum of two years before EU treaties and agreements cease to apply to the withdrawing country.
The minister also held meeting with the Ambassador-designate to France, Mr. Moeen-ul-Haq and urged him to conduct proactive trade diplomacy in France.

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