The second trilateral meeting of Foreign Ministers of Pakistan, Turkey and Azerbaijan held in Islamabad on 13, January 2021. All the three countries signed the document of Islambad Declaration, in which they Expressed satisfaction on the existing cordial ties among the three countries, based on fraternity, historic and cultural bonds, mutual respect and trust. All the three countries expressed their resolve to deepen further cooperation in all areas of mutual interest, including political, strategic, trade, economic, peace and security, science and technology and cultural fields. The participants also discussed the topics ranging from trade, investment, strategic cooperation, security, and connectivity during the meeting.
The two brotherly countries expressed their concerns over gross human rights violations by Indian government and its efforts to change demography of IIOJK. Similarly, Pakistan and Turkey expressed their support to Azerbaijan in Nagorno-Karabakh issue. Pakistan and Azerbaijan established bilateral relations in December 1991. Azerbaijan and Pakistan enjoyed excellent relations at the political level, but trade and economic relations were not up to the mark, presently the volume of bilateral trade is about 800 million dollars.
Both countries identified agriculture, industry, tourism, mining, hospitality and defence as potential areas of bilateral cooperation between Azerbaijan and Pakistan. Pakistan needs to transformed this relationship into long term economic and strategic partnership between the two countries. Pakistan must make efforts to export its quality products including pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, surgical instruments, sports goods, cutlery, electrical appliances, textile & leather products, furniture, home-made crafts, food and fruits products, engineering & consumer goods, rice to Azerbaijan, which could be the most favorite market for Pakistanis products.
Pakistan and Turkey have deep bonds since from 1947, and both countries helped each other in difficult times and supported each other’s cause at international forum. As reported, over 100 Turkish companies are currently working in Pakistan in diverse fields and Pakistan is encouraging more companies to come and invest in the country, however, it is pertinent to be mentioned, that how many Pakistanis companies are making business in Turkey. Both countries are cooperating in the defence production which is very beneficial for Pakistan. Presently, Pakistan and Turkey has Free trade Agreement (FTA), but the balance of bilateral trade is in Turkish favor, Pakistan needs to put more efforts to increase its exports to Turkey. It has been observed that most of the time Pakistani products couldn’t make their place in International market, Pakistan needs to in place a comprehensive mechanism to maintain the standard of its products to increase its exports in long term.