Economy, Business And Markets

Pakistan Ponders Opening Bank Branches in Iran

Muhammad Ijaz-ul-Haq(3rd R) a member of the National Assembly of Pakistan 
Muhammad Ijaz-ul-Haq(3rd R) a member of the National Assembly of Pakistan 

A proposal for Pakistani banks to open branches in Iran will soon be reviewed by the neighboring country’s officials, said a member of the National Assembly of the South Asian country.

“After I return to Pakistan, I will put forth the proposal to establish banking branches in Iran with banking executives,” Muhammad Ijaz-ul-Haq was quoted as saying by in his meeting with officials of the Tehran Chamber of Commerce, Industries, Mines and Agriculture.

Noting that bilateral ties have been improving since the lifting of sanctions as a result of Iran’s nuclear deal with world powers, the Pakistani official said the first draft of a memorandum of understanding (to strengthen banking relations) will soon be presented to Iranian representatives for their review.

“There will be a conference in Lahore in three to four months and we invite you to attend it,” he added.

Stressing that a banking disconnect between the two sides had created a significant barrier to mutual trade, he added that this barrier must be consigned to the past as soon as possible.

Ijaz-ul-Haq further said he is in favor of forming an Iran-Pakistan chamber and for TCCIM to introduce representatives for the proposed chamber.

The secretary-general of TCCIM was at the head of the panel meeting with the Pakistani delegation and spoke of business ties between the two Asian countries.

“The volume of trade between Iran and Pakistan is currently $900 million, which is not proportional to the existing potentials,” Bahman Eshqi said.

“President Hassan Rouhani has established a goal to increase the volume of bilateral dealings to $5 billion in five years.”

Eshqi announced that TCCIM is currently drafting an MoU to expand its dealings with Pakistan “in sectors such as energy, transit and other economic sectors”.

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