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Pakistan to host D-8 moot on energy: Sartaj

Pakistan has urged the commissioners of D-8 Organisation to evolve a mechanism of cooperation in the energy sector.

Addressing the inaugural session of the two-day meeting, Sartaj Aziz, Adviser to the Prime Minister on National Security and Foreign Affairs, said Pakistan was in the process of organising the first meeting of the D-8 Energy Forum in Islamabad.

The D-8 is a multilateral group of eight emerging economies of the Muslim world that represents Bangladesh, Egypt, Indonesia, Iran, Malaysia, Nigeria, Pakistan and Turkey. It hopes to increase the current $150 billion intra-D-8 trade to $500 billion by 2018.

The spokesman at the Foreign Office in a statement said that Sartaj Aziz also urged the organisation to initiate the phase of “substantive cooperation by operationalising the agreements related to removing barriers in trade and business, particularly the Preferential Trade Agreement”.

Pakistan says that it joined the D-8 in June 1997 since ‘economic revival’ was a high priority of the government and suggested that member countries could take initiatives in cooperation in capacity building, transfer of technology, transfer of capital and labour, energy and food security, Islamic banking, and Halal sector development.

Of importance is the presence of the D-8 Secretary-General Dr Seyed Ali Muhammad Mousavi.Sartaj Aziz, in a meeting with Mousavi, proposed ways to accelerate implementation of trade and visa agreements and expressed the hope that the D-8 Preferential Trade Agreement will be implemented soon.

The review of D-8 agreements relating to facilitation of trade and business among the member countries is on the agenda of the meeting. Pakistan has ratified all agreements including the Preferential Trade Agreement (PTA), which is likely to be operationalised during the chairmanship of Pakistan.

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