The Minister for Commerce and Textiles, Pervaiz Malik on Friday emphasized the importance of agri-trade and agribusiness for developing countries like Pakistan that derive their livelihoods predominantly from agriculture.
While speaking at the World Trade Organization (WTO) public forum event organized by Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) in Geneva, the minister stressed the importance of developing agriculture through access to newer technologies.
He stressed for focusing on the rural economy, integration of agrarian countries into global and regional value chains and providing a level playing field to farmers and agriculture exporters from small countries.
He also highlighted the significance of climate change and food security for developing countries as major challenges and called for agricultural productivity.
During his visit to Geneva, he also held a round table with the Friends of E-Commerce for Development (FEDs) a group of developing countries led by Pakistan and Costa Rica.
They also discussed matters surrounding connectivity and infrastructure for developing countries, and the possible outcomes in this area for the upcoming MC-11 WTO Ministerial Conference in December.
The Minister, along with a delegation of Parliamentarians from Pakistan, amongst Chairman of the National Assembly Standing Committee on Commerce, Siraj Khan, Senator Saud Majeed, and Senator Syed Tahir Mashhadi also met a Parliamentary delegation from the European Union (EU) Parliament comprising Bernd Lange, Mr. Helmut Schulz, Mrs. Inmaculada Rodriguez-Pinero Fernandez, and Mrs. Emma McClarkin for a discussion on matters of bilateral importance, primarily Generalized Schemes of Preference (GSP- plus).
The Minister explained the benefits to Pakistan and EU from the enhancement of bilateral trade as a result of GSP plus and appreciated the efforts of the EU in this regard.
He also showcased the progress made by Pakistan in social development including the progressive work on social and labour rights in the country.