Pakistan, EU agree to implement GSP+ international conventions

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Joint Commission discusses enhancing bilateral trade and address issues hampering it
Pakistan and European Union (EU) agreed on Friday to implement international conventions under the Generalised Scheme of Preferences Plus (GSP+), and enhance bilateral trade and address issues hampering it.
The EU-Pakistan Joint Commission was held by video conference on June 16, 2021. The plenary of the commission was preceded by sub-group meetings on Development Cooperation, held on February 25 2021; Trade, held on March 2, 2021; and Democracy, Governance, Rule of Law and Human Rights, held on June 1, 2021, read an official communique released today.
“The EU and Pakistan agreed to enhance bilateral trade, including by addressing issues that are hampering trade and investment, improving the business climate, and Pakistan’s efforts towards full implementation of the 27 international conventions stipulated under the EU’s unilateral trade preferences scheme, the Generalised Scheme of Preferences Plus (GSP+),” it said.
“Pakistan acknowledged the extension of its GSP+ status as a mutually rewarding step and affirmed its full commitment to fulfill its obligations under the GSP+. Pakistan underlined the relevant measures and actions taken since September last year,” the statement added.
The Joint Commission provided an opportunity to exchange views on all areas of cooperation between the EU and Pakistan.
Pakistan underlined that the EU is a valued partner of Pakistan, being home to a large Pakistani diaspora, its biggest trading partner and a source for investment, remittances and economic assistance.
“The EU and Pakistan reiterated their commitment for the full and effective implementation of the EU-Pakistan Strategic Engagement Plan (SEP), signed in June 2019,” according to the communique.
The Joint Commission also discussed the socio-economic impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.The humanitarian assistance provided by the European Union was highly appreciated.The ongoing vaccination programmes and future cooperation in vaccines were also discussed.
Pakistan’s efforts for sustainable economic recovery were also highlighted on the occasion.
“They also exchanged views on climate change, where the EU informed Pakistan about the European Green Deal, connectivity and digitalisation, and Pakistan briefed about various climate projects, including eco-system restoration, green stimulus and national electric vehicle policy.”
“They also discussed cooperation in the fields of education, culture, science and technology. The Joint Commission also provided an opportunity to discuss migration and mobility and to followup on the discussions of the EU-Pakistan Joint Read mission Committee, which was held on 24 February 2021,” the statement maintained.
On development cooperation, the EU and Pakistan appreciated encouraging progress. Pakistan appreciated the EU’s decision to re-orient its development assistance to support Pakistan’s efforts to tackle effects of the Covid-19 pandemic.
“The Joint Commission also exchanged views on priorities of future development cooperation. Joint efforts in the fields of democracy, governance, rule of law and human rights,” it concluded.