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Addressing a high-level Inter-Ministerial meeting in the wake of United Kingdom’s decision to leave the European Union, the Adviser to the Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs, Mr. Sartaj Aziz, said that Pak-UK relations are rooted in history and complemented by strong diaspora linkages.

The meeting was attended by Commerce Minister Mr. Khurram Dastagir, Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs, Mr. Tariq Fatemi, and Ambassador Masood Khan, DG ISSI, along with other senior officials. After detailed review, the meeting concluded that Brexit may not have any immediate economic impact on Pakistan. However, it would be necessary that Pakistani exporters improve their competitive advantage to compensate for the recent fall in the value of Sterling. The meeting requested the Commerce Ministry to carry out an in-depth analysis of Pakistan’s exports to the UK.

The meeting also discussed ways and means of ensuring that concessions available to Pakistan under GSP-Plus would continue either under the new arrangements worked out between the UK and EU or through bilateral arrangements with the United Kingdom.

The meeting also asked the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to closely monitor legal and commercial implications of the treaties and agreements signed between the UK and EU and the likely timings of the new arrangements that may evolve.

The meeting further underlined that Pakistan has excellent economic and trade relations with the EU and multi-dimensional cooperation in different fields under a medium term strategic framework. This cooperation will continue.

27 June 2016

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