Business Council of Belarus and Pakistan: new horizons of strategic partnership

№ 4, 2021

The promising avenues for the development of trade and economic cooperation of Belarus and Pakistan, the possibilities to enhance trade turnover, implement joint projects in mechanical engineering, pharmaceutical sECTOR, agriculture, chemical, textile industry, as well as specific questions and proposals of businesses on the improvement of bilateral relations were considered during the 5th session of the Belarus-Pakistan Business Council in Minsk on the 5th of October. Participating in the event were representatives of more than 160 companies from both countries.


The relations of the Republic of Belarus and the Islamic Republic of Pakistan are growing strategic. The countries regularly exchange visits of different-level delegations, including despite the difficulties caused by the epidemiologic situation. The basic conditions have been created for the development of bilateral relations across the areas of mutual interest. There has been a legal framework developed, which includes more than 80 agreements, mechanisms for interaction in the form of commissions and working groups. The states have put together a framework for inter­regional cooperation, laid the foundations for inter-parliamentary diplomacy, and much more.

Over the recent years, annual bilateral trade with Pakistan varied between USD 50 and 75 million. The main Belarusian export positions are technologically advanced engineering, chemical and food products: tractors, automotive equipment, tires, chemical fibers, baby food, and other goods. Both sides seek to expand economic cooperation, especially in agriculture, woodworking, metallurgy and petroleum chemistry.

The activities of the Joint Belarusian-Pakistani Commission for Trade and Economic Cooperation are of great importance for the strengthening of bilateral relations, as well as the Belarus-­Pakistan Business Council established under the assistance of the chambers of commerce and industry. The fifth session of the latter was held in Minsk on the 5th of October and became one of the few offline-format international business events over the last two years. On that day, the Belarusian capital was hosting a big business delegation from Pakistan, whose mission was to strengthen the economic potential of bilateral relations. The delegation represented major economic sectors of Pakistan, including manufacturing, oil production, pharmaceutical industry, agriculture.

The Business Council session was organized by the Belarusian Chamber of Commerce and Industry and the Federation of Pakistani Chambers of Commerce and Industry. Participating in the event were the BelCCI Chairman Vladimir Ulakhovich, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Belarus Mikalai Barysevich, Deputy Minister of Energy of the Republic of Belarus Denis Moroz, President of the Federation of Pakistani Chambers of Commerce and Industry Mian Nasser Hyatt Maggo, Chairman of the Pakistan-Belarus Business Council Shahzad Sabir, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan to the Republic of Belarus Sajjad Haider Khan, as well as representatives of about 100 Belarusian and more than 60 Pakistani companies and organizations.

As he addressed the participants, the BelCCI Chairman expressed the ­opinion that Belarus can be an important partner for Pakistan that imports some USD 47 billion worth of products annually. "The country knows Belarusian machines, the tractor "BELARUS" in particular. Today we are discussing the opportunity to set up a facility to assemble 10,000 Belarusian tractors a year in Pakistan. This project is now in progress and preliminary documents have been signed. We see the possibility of setting up joint ventures in the pharmaceutical sector and food production," Vladimir Ulakhovich said.

The BelCCI Chairman underlined that the Business Council meetings, like other important business meetings, affect both the volume of bilateral trade and export supplies. "This year is showing good dynamics, exports grew 63 percent in January–June. I think we will post good figures this year, because the potential for cooperation is huge," Vladimir ­Ulakhovich noted.


Deputy Foreign Minister of Belarus Mikalai Barysevich underlined that it is important that Belarus and Pakistan ensure the progressive development of promising points of growth. "Taking into account the structure of the two economies, we can identify several key areas of work. In particular, we can step up mutual trade of traditional products, set up joint manufactures of Belarusian equipment in Pakistan, and also joint ventures to make surgical instruments and leather products in Belarus. Setting up joint medicine production clusters is promising. They can be based both in Belarus and in Pakistan. We need to attract Pakistani capital into projects to upgrade Belarusian enterprises of the textile industry, to develop joint agricultural manufactures, to implement joint scientific projects with commercialization opportunities and also projects to create a university of applied technologies in Pakistan that will provide high-quality joint professional and technical training of Pakistani specialists using Belarusian educational technologies," Mikalai Barysevich noted.

Speaking about promising areas of cooperation, the Deputy Minister stressed that they are fully in sync with the economic interests of both ­Belarus and Pakistan. He urged the session participants, business communities and associations of both states to use the Business Council platform to determine what steps can be taken to boost cooperation, what projects can be implemented together. "We need to jointly craft acceptable approaches to ensure more active and substantive development of trade and economic relations," Mikalai Barysevich summed up.

Ambassador Extraordinary and ­Plenipotentiary of Pakistan to Belarus ­Sajjad Haider Khan spoke on the ­interest of the Pakistani part in intensifying economic cooperation with Belarus. "Belarus and Pakistan maintain very close contacts, especially in trade, investment and manufacturing. We have gathered today to give these contacts an additional boost. The main goal for Pakistan is to promote economic cooperation, we do not harbor any geopolitical ambitions, but are only interest­ed in economic ties," the diplomat emphasized.

The session participants discussed the current state and prospects for the development of Belarus-Pakistan trade, economic and investment cooperation, the directions of the Business Council activities aimed to strengthen the economic potential of bilateral relations, the specific questions and proposals of business. Presentations were delivered of the opportunities offered by the Great Stone China-Belarus Industrial Park for foreign investors, the successful and promising bilateral projects in the pharmaceutical sector, in agriculture, chemical, textile industry.


The plenary session was followed by B2B meetings of Belarusian and Pakistani entrepreneurs, who negotiated future mutually beneficial cooperation in various fields.

The session of the Belarus-Pakistan Business Council helped business­people establish new contacts, discuss further plans on partnerships development for the increase in mutual trade. The fact that despite the epidemiologic restrictions the event was held offline, with the personal participation of entrepreneurs, reflects the real interest of enterprises and organizations in cooperation for the sake of both countries.