“Pakistan and UAE Forge Stronger Trade Ties, Surpassing $10 Billion in Fiscal Year 2022”
In a significant economic milestone, Pakistan and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) have strengthened their bilateral trade relationship, achieving a remarkable trade volume exceeding $10 billion during the fiscal year 2022. This accomplishment has elevated the UAE to the coveted position of Pakistan’s largest trading partner in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region, which encompasses 21 countries.
Fakhruddin Diwan, Chairman of the Pakistan-UAE Business Council, underscored the potential for Pakistan to address complex economic challenges through a robust and enduring partnership with the UAE. Notably, the UAE is home to one of the world’s largest Pakistani diasporas, responsible for remitting a substantial $6.11 billion to Pakistan.
Diwan emphasized the attractiveness of UAE investments in Pakistan and advocated for collaborative ventures across various sectors, including industrial projects, solar energy initiatives, corporate farming, IT and ITeS, and petrochemicals. Additionally, he called for the UAE’s integration into the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), a transformative infrastructure project.
Remarkably, the UAE has played a pivotal role in bolstering Pakistan’s foreign exchange reserves by depositing multibillion-dollar sums with the State Bank of Pakistan over the past three decades.
In a related development, Pakistan’s Chief of Army Staff (COAS), General Asim Munir, engaged in discussions with business leaders in Lahore. During this meeting, it was revealed that a substantial investment plan of $25 billion was explored with the Crown Prince of the UAE, Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan (MBZ). General Munir expressed optimism that countries such as Saudi Arabia, the UAE, China, Qatar, and Kuwait would make significant investments in Pakistan, contributing to its economic growth.
The diplomatic ties between Pakistan and the UAE date back to 1971 when Pakistan was the first country to extend recognition to the newly formed UAE. This enduring relationship has seen recent financial support, including a $1 billion deposit by the UAE in the State Bank of Pakistan, as confirmed by former finance minister Ishaq Dar.
These substantial inflows, combined with a $2 billion contribution from Saudi Arabia, have significantly bolstered Pakistan’s foreign reserves. These positive developments align with the requirements of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) for Pakistan’s ninth review.
In a decisive move to address economic challenges, Pakistan recently signed a new nine-month $3 billion Stand-By Arrangement (SBA) with the IMF, following rigorous negotiations between the two parties.